Biography

Irena Josifoska is one of the most promising cellists of her generation. She was the 1st prize winner at the Gabrielli cello competition in november 2021 in Berlin and as academist of Verbier Festival winner of the prize Prix Jean-Nicolas Firmenich. In 2017 she was the youngest semifinalist of the Queen Elisabeth competition.

The musicians and critics all over the world describe her as a very virtuosic and energetic artist, with specific individual expression in her playing.

Irena was born in 1996 in Subotica (Serbia) into a family of musicians. She started playing the cello at the age of 5 in Novi Sad, in the class of Judit Niederholzer-Josifoska. She finished Bachelor studies at the “Hochschule für Musik” in Detmold (Germany) in the class of prof.Xenia Jankovic and at the moment she is a student of Master studies in „Universität der Künste“ Berlin, in the class of prof.Jens Peter Maintz.

Since october 2021 she is „Artist in residence“ of „Queen Elisabeth music chapelle“ in Brussels for chamber-music and from september 2022 she will be part of the „Villa musica foundation and chamber music festival academy“.

She won many highest awards in national and international competitions, like Dotzauer cello competition in Germany, Herann cello competition in Czech republic, International cello competition in Liezen, Austria. In 2015, as the youngest contestant, she was the finalist and one of laureats of Jeunesses musicales international competition in Belgrade and won The audience prize and several special prizes. In 2018 she got a SILVER MEDAL in Vienna international music competition and in 2019 GOLDEN MEDAL with High distinction in Manhattan international music competition. In 2020 she got a Special prize of the family Janigro at the Janigro competition in Zagreb and in April this year she won the "GWK Scholarship prize" in the competition among all instruments, in Germany.

Irena is a recipient of several recognitions, like: The most promising young music artist in 2013, the prize from Society of music artists of Serbia as The best young music artist in 2015, The little prince prize in 2018.

She performed all over the Europe and USA and she was a soloist of the eminent orchestras, like Deutsche Sinfonietta Berlin, Wurttembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen, Hagen Symphony orchestra, NWD orchestra, Detmold chamber orchestra, Kaunas philharmony, Orchestra nazionale sinfonica, Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, etc. She was participant of the biggest festivals, like Verbier Festival Academy, Musiktage Mondsee, Rutesheim Cello Akademie, Liechteinstein Musikakademie, ISA-International summer academy, Crescendo festival Berlin, Moritzburg Festival Academy (1st prize of audience), Hohenstaufen chamber music festival, Nitzow chamber music festival, Ljubljana Festival, Music Forum in Trenta, Slovenia held by Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, etc.

Irena recorded two CDs, one for „A-records“ (Sweden), another one for „Art-link“ and „Societe generale bank“.
She also plays a barock cello , with in September 2019 she recorded a CD with the „VOX barock ensemble“ for „Sony“.

Josifoska is „Thomastik Infeld artist“, was the scholarship holder of „Deutschland Stipendium“ and of „Ad infinitum and DAAD“ fondation.

Irena attended master classes with prof. David Geringas, Frans Helmerson, Steven Isserlis, Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt, Jerome Pernoo, Claudio Bohorquez, Wenn Sin Yang, Marc Coppey, Christian Poltera, Daniel Müller Schott, Alban Gerhardt, etc.

She worked and played with eminent musicians and conductors like Ivry Gitlis, Heinrich Schiff, Maria-Elisabeth Lott, Helmuth Rilling, Andrea Lieberknecht, Kent Nagano, Dag Jensen, Marie-Luise Neunecker, Jonas Vitaud, Frank-Michael Erben, Keiko Tamura, Naoko Sonoda, Artemis quartett, Auryn quartett, Annika Treutler, Corina Belcea, etc.

Composers Dejan Despic, S.S.Kovacevic, Aleksandar Vujic, Tibor Hartig and Günter Puzberg dedicated their compositions to Irena.

Irena plays as a guest solo-cellist of Camerata Salzburg, Bayerische Kammerphilharmonie, Detmolder chamber-orchestra, Munich radio-orchestra and she is permanent substitution in Deutsches Symphonie Orchester Berlin (performing mostly in the hall of Berlin philharmonic).

Words of musicians:
“Irena is one of rare cellists, where from her confident coming to the stage, her instrumental virtuosity, her expressiveness and her whole personality I was tied up. Among big number of great cellists nowadays, she is above almost everybody, because of what she can, because of her expressivity and exceptional taste for musical styles.”
Götz Teutsch, solo-cellist of "Berlin philharmonic", 2022
“Irena is for sure one of the most gifted musicians I met in my career. Her enthusiasm transports the music directly to the heart of her audience and her stunning technique, her variable, warm and brilliant tone and her virtuosity leave the listener stunned and grateful.”
Florian Ludwig, conductor, 2021
“Irena is an exceptionally expressive musician, her technical abilities are of a high level and she has a very good sense for expressing different styles and colours in music.”
Xenia Jankovic, cellist, 2021
“It is unbelievable how someone can experience and convey all the sung and painful legato in Faure’s “Elegie” without having oneself suffered greatly and not having a wounded soul.”
G. Krajacic, 2009
”Contact with Irena Josifoska gave the audience moments of true joy in the beauty of music and a soaring performance which captivated with its genuine liveliness and unusual maturity of expression.”
B. Hlozan, 2011
“Each generation has its own aces and in the present one it is certainly Irena Josifoska.This child is talked about and has great prospects. ”
B. Radović, 2010
“Irenas determination, playing impulse, attitude, looks, dominance over the “musical matter“ and as always, such a striking fusion between the artist and instrument, left a huge impression...”
M. Adamov, 2013

Schedule

    2021

  • 24th of May:
    "Crescendo festival"

    Beethoven Sonata No.2, g-minor
    Naoko Sonoda, piano
    Location: Berlin

  • 15th - 25th of June:
    NEO Festival

    Location: Novi Sad, Serbia

  • 26th of June - 3rd of July:
    Detmolder Kammerorchester

    Conductor: Frank Michael Erben

  • 3rd of July:
    Gulda cello concerto with "Deutsche Sinfonietta Berlin"

    Location: Berlin, Germany

  • 11th of July - 2nd of August:
    "Verbier Festival Academy"

    Location: Verbier, Switzerland

  • 28th of August - 2nd of September:
    Chambermusic-Festival on "Mondsee" with "Auryn quartett"

    Location: Mondsee, Austria

  • 15th of September - 18th of September:
    VOX barock ensemble
    Telemmann Festival

    Location: Magdeburg, Germany

  • 22nd of September - 26th of September:
    Bayerische Kammerphilharmonie

    Location: Augsburg and Harz, Germany

  • 3rd of October:
    Bach, Gliere, Handel-Halvorsen, Piazzolla...

    Location: Kaunitz, Germany

  • 20th of October - 23rd of October:
    Bayerische Kammerphilharmonie

    Location: Augsburg, Germany

  • 28th of October:
    Mozart piano trio

    Location: Brussels, Belgium

  • 28th of November:
    Haydn C-major cello concerto

    Location: Kaunitz, Germany

  • 14th - 18th of December:
    Liechtenstein Music-Academy
  • 2022

  • 2nd of February:
    Shostakovich 2nd cello concerto

    "Vojvodina Symphony Orchestra"
    Location: Novi Sad, Serbia

  • 1st and 2nd of April:
    GWK Competition

    Location: Münster, Germany

  • 24th of April:
    Tchaikovsky: Rococo variations

    Location: Kaunitz, Germany

  • 6th - 10th of May:
    Solo cello of "Camerata Salzburg"

    Location: Oviedo, Spain

  • 6th - 10th of July:
    "Nitzow Chamber Music festival"

    Location: Nitzow, Germany

  • 10th of July - 1st of August:
    Verbier Festival Academy

    Location: Verbier, Switzerland

  • 13th of August:
    "Ohrid Summer Festival"- recital with the pianist Aleksandar Djermanovic

    Programme: Rachmaninoff, Medtner, Piazzolla, Schumann
    Location: Ohrid, North Macedonia

  • 21st of August - 4th of September:
    Krzyzowa Chambermusic Festival

    Location: Krzyzowa, Poland

  • 15th of September:
    Concert of "Artlink most promising music artist" winners

    Location: Belgrade, Serbia

  • 13th of November:
    "GWK" winners concert

    Location: Münster, Germany

  • 17th of December:
    Schubert "Trout quintett"

    Location: Zürich, Switzerland

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