The teachers in 2023
Unison Strings Festival is proud to announce this year's great teachers
VIOLINIST - DENMARK
Peter Clemson Steensgaard
Peter is born in 1990 and raised by danish/english parents (both professional violinists). He has been taking violin classes at Aarhus Music School since the age of 3 - his teachers were Jan Matthiesen and later Kristoffer Dolatko. In 2009 Peter started his studies at The Royal Danish Academy of Music, where he studied under Johannes Søe Hansen og Serguei Azizian. In 2011 he went on exchange at the North Western University in Chicago, to study under the acclaimed violin teachers, Roland and Almita Vamos. Peter Steensgaard has been playing on many occasions in both Denmark, England, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Ukraine, China, the Faroe Islands and the United States, performing as soloist, in chamber music ensembles and in orchestra. He has participated in various masterclasses under Henning Kraggerud, Joseph Swensen, Felix Ayo, Gerhard Schulz, Piotr Janowski, Milan Vietek og Emerson String Quartet. Peter is now teaching at Aarhus Music School, and occasionally playing at Aarhus Symphony Orchestra.
VIOLINIST - DENMARK
Søren Steensgaard has a degree from the Royal Academy of Music in Aalborg, where he graduated in 1987. His teachers were concert masters Gunnar Tagmose and Svend Børge Jensen. He took a higher education in London, where he studied under professor Bela Katona for two years, and in Copenhagen, where he studied under professor Milan Vitek, also for two years. Later, he took the Suzuki education under Tove Detrekøy, and is certified with all 5 levels. Besides, he has participated in various courses, like Colour Strings, Paul Rollands method and conductor courses. As a violinist, he has been playing in Aalborg Symphony Orchestra, Randers Chamber Orchestra, Aarhus Symphony Orchestra, Odense Symphony Orchestra, South Denmark Philharmonic,
various theatres and churches. Since 1990, he has been working as a violin teacher at Aarhus Musikskole, where he also conducts a children's string orchestra. He has been teaching at many Suzuki camps in both Denmark, Sweden and Norway, and has been participating as one of the teachers at Unison Strings Festival in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.
VIOLIST - ICELAND
Anna Hugadóttir is an Icelandic violist, working full time as viola teacher at Tónskóli Sigursveins in Reykjavík, where she also work as a music educator, introducing music and playing to young school children. She has a BA degree in chamber music and string teaching from Fontys Hogeschool for de Kunsten in Tilburg, The Netherlands.
In recent years she has followed conducting courses at the Norwegian Academy of Music and regularly follows courses on string teaching and playing.
Anna has worked as a violin and viola teacher in Iceland and Norway since 2007. She is also a freelance viola and baroque viola player and has performed a wide range of music with diverse ensembles and orchestras, including several indie and metal bands, theatre music and studio work.
VIOLIST - GREENLAND / VENEZUELA
SOfia Carolina Hernandez
Sofia Carolina Hernandez is from Guatire, Venezuela, where she started playing viola in the El Sistema Nacional de Orquestas when she was 14. She continued studying the viola at Conservatorio de Música Simón Bolívar de El Paraíso, and later studied music at Universidad Experimental de las Artes where she graduated from as candidate specialized in music teaching. Sofia came to Uummannaq in 2014 to work as a teacher and conductor in the music project at the Uummannaq Children's Home. She is using her training from El Sistema as a part of the children's treatment. Sofia and her string orchestra from Uummannaq, has been participating in Unison Strings Festival since the beginning.
CELLIST - THE FAROE ISLANDS
Tóri Restorff Jacobsen
Faroese cello player, Tóri Restorff Jacobsen, started playing cello at the Faroese School of Music. When he was 17 years old, Tóri moved to Iceland to study under Gunnar Kvaran at the Reykjavík College of Music. Tóri since moved to Denmark, and in 2002 he got accepted into the Carl Nielsen Academy of Music in Odense, where he studied under professor Niels Ullner. In 2017, after obtaining a Master's degree in music performance, Tóri returned to the Faroe Islands and in 2018, he was appointed as the head of Nes Sóknar Musikkskúli, where he also teaches cello and string orchestra. Tóri enjoys teaching and possesses a considerable amount of teaching experience, having held numerous instructional positions at music schools in both the Faroe Islands, Denmark and Iceland. Besides teaching, Tóri is also a current member of the Faroese National Symphony Orchestra. Tóri has been a teacher at the Unison Strings Festival since 2017.
CELLIST - THE FAROE ISLANDS
Andreas Tykjær Restorff
Andreas is a Faroese cello player, residing in Denmark. He started playing cello in 1997 at Tórshavnar Musikkskúli, and quickly advanced to get accepted at the pre-conservatory school of Tórshavn, Musikkskulamiðnám. Here he studied under Faroese cellists Jens Chr. Guttesen and Nikolas Kapnas as well as other cellists, such as Anders Öberg, Morten Zeuthen, Anders Grøn, Henrik Dam Thomsen and Matt Haimovitz. He got accepted into The Royal Danish Academy of Music in 2007, from where he graduated with a Master in music. At the academy he studied under Morten Zeuthen, Toke Møldrup, Andreas Brantelid and Ingemar Brantelid. While studying in Copenhagen, Andreas became a member of The Faroese National Symphony Orchestra. He has also been performing with other Faroese ensembles and artists - i.e. Ensemble Aldubáran, Orkestrið, Hettarher, Teitur and Eivør. Andreas has a lot of experience as a teacher, as he has been teaching at various music schools all over Denmark and the Faroe Islands. This year will be his first time teaching at Unison Strings Festival.
DOUBLE BASS - DENMARK
POUL ERIK JØRGENSEN
Poul Erik Jørgensen got accepted into the Royal Academy of Music in Aarhus in 1978 and graduated with a diploma exam in 1984. Later, in 1986, he finished the higher education in music pedagogy. At the conservatory, Poul Erik studied under Jens Holm and Bent Grosen, both bass players in Aarhus Symphony Orchestra, and later his long time colleagues. He has been participating in courses/masterclasses with various bass players, such as: Rodney Slatford, Ludwig Streicher, Jorma Katrama, Knut Guettler, Frantisek Posta and Thomas Martin. Besides his classical career, he is an experienced jazz musician and has participated in masterclasses with danish jazz legend Niels Henning Ørsted Pedersen. After graduating at the conservatory, Poul Erik joined Aalborg Symphony Orchestra until 1990, where he got a seat in Aarhus Symphony Orchestra, where he has been working since. Poul Erik has been a part of Unison Strings Festival since the beginning in 2015.
CONDUCTOR AND ACCOMPANIST - SCOTLAND
Bawtree studied music and the organ at Christ’s College, Cambridge University, and conducting at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (formerly the RSAMD). As organist and continuo player, he has performed with many orchestras including the London Symphony, Swedish Radio, Bergen Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, BBC Scottish Symphony, Scottish Chamber and the RSNO, including concerts at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the BBC Proms and the Edinburgh International Festival. Organ recital invitations have taken Bawtree to all the major British cathedrals, Notre-Dame de Paris, Washington National Cathedral, Auckland Town Hall and to Bermuda, New England, California and across Scandinavia.
A musician with a wide-ranging international career, British conductor and organist Michael Bawtree was appointed Principal Conductor of JAM (John Armitage Memorial Trust) in 2017. He regularly conducts the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, and has directed the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, London Mozart Players, Red Note Ensemble, the Orchestra of Scottish Opera, Orchestra North East and many performances for Scottish Ballet, Northern Ballet and Raymond Gubbay Limited across the British Isles. For seven years he was Assistant Music Director of the Lyrique-en-Mer summer opera festival in Brittany. He joined the music staff at Glyndebourne for their 2018 production of Debussy’s Pelleas et Melisande, and has worked as guest chorus master for the BBC Singers, Danish National Opera (Michael Kohlhaas, Eugene Onegin) and St Endellion Festival (Death in Venice). This season he returns to Scottish Ballet to conduct performances of Swan Lake.