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Solenne Ensemble is a contemporary, classical, jazzy formation.The ensemble is dedicated to contemporary music projects such as operas and premieres of classical art songs, that are open to the influences of other styles. Ensemble Solenne is charactized by an excellent playing technique and a transgressive musical attitude. Their extraordinary compositions consists of captivating melodies and tonal harmonies that do not shy away from excursions into melodic-harmonic entenglements. Playing with different musical stylistic means and boundaries, a lot of harmonic variety and skilful style mixtures, internationaly well-known classical and jazz musicians dare to create new sound pictures. Sound forms alternate musically between the contemporary and composed jazz eclectic and classical line.  

2020 Solenne Ensemble performed the mono-opera "Soubrette auf der Toilette" by Gene Pritsker, libretto Ljiljana Winkler in New York, Friedberg, Augsburg and Schwaz. Digital album opera "Soubrette auf der Toilette"  was released 2022 by Composer Concordance label contributed by NAXOS USA. 

A second album will be released in October 2023, also on the prestigious Composer Concordance /Naxos USA label.

The ensemble performs new music and collaborate with well-known contemporary classical, jazz and eclectic composers  Gene Pritsker, Prof.Dr. Jozefius Waters (SWARMIUS) Harry Alt (Harrycane Orchestra) etc.

The Ensemble performs regular at the music festival "Hybrass" as well as anual festival "Lange Kunstnacht" (Art Night Augsburg). 

Ensemble Solenne is a unique formation that fuses the special musical core of classical, jazz and film music. At the same time, the group remains dynamic, humorous and profound in dealing with current issues.  

"This was a perfect synthesis of classical and jazz, great artists,

great front woman with a brilliant voice and excellent charisma.

A masterful total work of art." R.K.





Solenne Ensemble


Opera "Soubrette auf der Toilette" by Gene Pritsker and Ljiljana Winkler feat. Solenne Ensemble

2021 Gene Pritsker composed the Mono Jazz Chamber Opera "Soubrette on the Toilet". The short opera is based on texts by soprano Ljiljana Winkler and author Andreas Winkler. The humorous pieces provide a critical insight into the situations and true encounters in the theater restroom during an audition for a future
opera engagement. The shiny world of the theater casts shadows on the personal existences behind the scenes. Dressing and singing in, as well as meetings and conversations in the theater restroom, tend to last longer than auditions for a possible mainstage engagement. The musical language is contemporary music with interweavings of jazz, pop and film music styles. The Puccini and Schumann musical language is combined with jazz and film music. The opera was premiered in New York at Di Menna Center for classical Music, further performances Augsburg at Kleinem Goldener Saal, Munich at Münchener Gesellschaft für Neue Musik, at Jazzfestival Friedberg and Schwaz.

Plot and musical arrangement and text:

The eclectic opera consists of four parts. The musical form alternates between styles: Jazz, classical, pop, contemporary classical and film music. In chronological scenes, the opera presents existential themes from the life of a young singer. There are different patterns of characters as well as impressive moods of the audition situations.

Part I
The inspiration for the first part of the opera "Dedication - my suitcase for the audition" was given to the author and singer during a lecture of the artistic agency for auditions during her vocal studies. The content of the aforementioned lecture was about the appropriate self-presentation at auditions for theater engagements. In particular, the suggestions about the appropriate clothing for women at the audition, serves as a template of the first part.

The note of the then graduate said: "Clothing plays a big role. Women should dress appropriately for the opera role they are auditioning for. Not over dressed because of the time of day-no evening gown. A skirt is okay. The skirt should not be too short but not too long. Under no circumstances red shoes with a high heel! - Too sexy. But also no black, that is too dark. Be careful with the make-up, not too much, not too little. The shoes should not have a high heel but also should not be completely without heel. Unless you're auditioning for the special, feminine pants roles, then no heel and of course matching pants, just not too masculine."

Provided is a glimpse into the young singer's attempt to fashion herself into the appropriate opera product. In doing so, the opera shows the recurring inner resistance of the singer to open herself up to typecasting and the stereotypes to be embodied. Here composer Pritsker uses the jazzy rhythms. The jazz band supports the singer's moods with a groovy sound.

Part II and III

The second and third parts of the opera merge musically. In these musical sections, Pritsker takes up the presentation of the content with contemporary musical language. Dissonant and with a very fast tempo, the stressful situations are depicted. The singer rushed to the theater on foot with her suitcase because the bus was cancelled. She arrives at the theater and met numerous singers in the corridors. At the gate, the theater staff told her that the audition room and dressing room were the theater restrooms. The third part, which is about the encounters in the theater restroom, is set to film music like a thriller.

Two encounters are particularly formative. An experienced singer, who is much older than the young music college graduate, changes her clothes in the toilet and sings herself in. The young singer's observations suggest conflicts of her own. It is about recurring patterns in the opera industry, where it often happens that singers have to sing and change in windowless rooms or the theater toilet. The young singer projects the sadness of the older colleague onto herself. She asks critical questions about the professional politics of the theater.

The second encounter is with a singer whom the author perceives and describes as a confident, experienced young singer. In the theater restroom, the singer unpacks a roll-on piano, and sings her way in. She gives the impression of having experience with audition situations.

For this section, Pritsker chooses a catchy pop-groovy quick-to-memorize melody. In this situation, too, it is clear that the young singer is projecting her desires to be more confident onto the competitor.

Part IV

In the fourth part of the jazz opera, the theme of auditions is atmospherically presented on the main stage. With dissonant tones, Puccini language and jazzy harmonies, the failed short performance of the audition situation is depicted. The self-perception and the perception of others, the dissociative stage fright and the scenic representation of the inner conflicts, are musically supported by recurring dissonant harmonies. "Why is the piano actually out of tune, my body asks itself as it sings. But I am now probably rather out of tune myself".

Project Contributors:

Solenne Ensemble

Ljiljana Winkler – Sopran, Libretto

Gene Pritsker – composer, conductor, music producer

Saori Anraku: Klavier

Peter Oswald: Trumpet

Kay Fischer: Saxophon

Uli Fiedler: Bass

Harry Alt: Drumm set

Visual Artwork: Aleksandar Arsenović, Margareta Kern, Nikola Radovanovic, Ljiljana Winkler

Stage costume/ make up
Anica Glišić, Margareta Kern, Slavica Rađević

The project was funded by

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