Voix Nouvelles Academy 2022

The Voix Nouvelles Academy is open to composers and performers wishing to hone their skills in the interpretation of the contemporary repertory and presents a rare opportunity to progress under the guidance of world-famous composers and performers.

For composers, it recreates the complete process of creation of a new work, in professional conditions: commission, composition, rehearsals, concert, under the supervision of internationally renowned tutors belonging to different aesthetics. It calls on the leading ensembles to rehearse and perform the works and to advise and interact with the composers, taking an active part in the elaboration of the work. The academy also gives the opportunity of composing and getting to a better knowledge of specific instruments.

In its duration and its exceptional working conditions, the academy constitutes a unique forum for exchanges between composers, performers and thinkers.


Hugues DUFOURT, composer (France, 1943)
Clemens GADENSTÄTTER, composer (Autriche, 1966)
Sarah NEMTSOV, composer (Allemagne, 1980)
Ensemble ICTUS (Belgique)
Johanna Vargas, soprano (Argentine)
Marie Ythier, violoncelle (France)

Hugues DUFOURT, composer (France, 1943)
Hugues Dufourt favours continuities and slow transformations of a musical discourse that is rarely interrupted. He conceives of forms through the evolution of masses and works on the notions of thresholds, oscillations, interferences and oriented processes. A pioneer of the spectral movement, he nevertheless gives it a broader definition, seeking to highlight the instability that timbre introduces into orchestration. His music is based on a wealth of sonic and harmonic constellations and is based on a dialectic of timbre and time. He draws part of his inspiration from pictorial art, from which he essentially retains the role of colour, materials and light (Dawn Flight, a string quartet premiered in 2008 at Musica, Le Cyprès Blanc and L’Origine du Monde, premiered at Musica 2004).
Influenced by the French avant-garde of the 1960s, Hugues Dufourt participated in the activities of L’Itinéraire (1975-81) and in 1977 founded the Collectif de Recherche Instrumentale et de Synthèse Sonore (CRISS) with Alain Bancquart and Tristan Murail. He was awarded the Agrégation in Philosophy in 1967 and has published numerous works. He was a research fellow (1973-85) and then director of research at the CNRS (1985-2009) and in 1982 created the Unité Mixte de Recherche “Recherche Musicale” which he directed until 1995. Hugues Dufourt has received numerous awards, including the Prix du Président de la République in 2000 for the body of his work, awarded by the Académie Charles Cros.
In recent years, Hugues Dufourt has composed works for various formations, from solo piano (Tombeau de Debussy, premiered at Festival Musica 2018) to large orchestra (Ur-Geräusch, premiered in 2016 by the WDR Orchestra), via string quartet (Le Supplice de Marsyas after Titian for the Arditti Quartet) or percussion (Burning Bright, premiered by the Percussions de Strasbourg at the Festival Musica 2014). In preparation, Les courants polyphoniques after Klee, commissioned by the Stichting Amstel Saxofoonwartet.

Clemens GADENSTÄTTER, composer (Autriche, 1966)
Clemens Gadenstätter studied Composition under Erich Urbanner and Helmut Lachenmann. In addition, he graduated in Performance Studies (flute) at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna.
Gadenstätter’s musical undertaking explores the compositional resynthesis of perception, sensation and feeling. For him, this should bring together the trinity of listening, comprehension, and composition.
His recent work concerns the transformation of acoustically triggered, pre-formed feelings: (in the series E.P.O.S.: les premiers cris, les cris des lumières, les derniers cris for different ensemble arrangements; „HÖREN VERSTEHEN KOMPONIEREN“ [LISTENING COMPREHENSION COMPOSITION] – Essay); daily work and the banal (in Semantical Investigations 1 for violin and ensemble, Semantical Investigations 2 for small ensemble; as well as the essay, „Was heißt hier banal“ [What do we mean banal?]); the poly-modality of listening (platzen/bersten for cello and piano, häuten, schlitzen, reißen, String Quartet 1, 2, and 3, ES, minimal opera for voice, ensemble, and film; les derniers cris / E.P.O.S. 1; les cris des lumières / E.P.O.S. 2; les premiers cris / E.P.O.S. 3) as well as musical iconography (the series ICONOSONICS 1 – 3). At present, Gadenstätter has invigorated his engagement with other media: les cris des lumières for ensemble and light; and daily transformations for voices, instruments, electronics, video, space, and light, a work realized in collaboration with Anna Henckel-Donnersmark (film) and Lisa Spalt (text).

Sarah NEMTSOV, composer (Allemagne, 1980)
Sarah Nemtsov (née Reuter) was born in Oldenburg, Germany in 1980. Her mother was the painter Elisabeth Naomi Reuter. In 1987, Nemtsov got her first music lessons, around the same time she began writing her first compositions. Between 1989 and 1993 she participated in numerous concerts and recordings of the REIL TRIO as a recorder player. At the age of 14 she started playing the oboe.
Since 1998 she studied composition at the Hanover Hochschule for Music and Theatre with Nigel Osborne as a “young student”. In 2000 she began with her regular studies at the same institution with Johannes Schoellhorn (composition) and Klaus Becker (oboe). Since 2003 she studied oboe with Burkhard Glaetzner (Berlin). After her graduation in both disciplines in 2005, she began with her post-graduate studies in composition with Walter Zimmermann at the Berlin University of the Arts (Meisterschueler exam with distinction).
Her catalogue with over 100 compositions shows a wide variety of genres – from instrumental solo to orchestra, opera, electronic music or film. In her unique musical language she combines different influences, from renaissance and baroque music to jazz and rock. The intensity of her music is also created through the reference to other arts and extra-musical content. This includes political and social issues.


Ensemble ICTUS (Belgique)
Collaborations with Royaumont :
1997 et 1999 : concerts sessions Voix Nouvelles. 2003 : Spectacle An Index of Metals Lekovich, Pachini, Romitelli, Romoli. 2017 : concert Interstices avec Amir ElSaffar.
Ictus is a Brussels-based contemporary music ensemble. Since 1994, it has shared the premises of the P.A.R.T.S dance school, and the Rosas company (headed by Anne-Teresa De Keersmaeker) with which it has collaborated on fifteen productions, from Amor Constante to Repertoire Evening. Ictus has also worked with other choreographers including Wim Vandekeybus, Maud Le Pladec, Noé Soulier, Eleanor Bauer and Fumiyo Ikeda, Etienne Guilloteau.
Every year, Ictus performs in Brussels for an entire season, in partnership with the Kaaitheater and Bozar. This season, Ictus will experiment again with programmes for a culturally aware but non-specialist audience: theatre, dance, performance and music enthusiasts. The ensemble examines formats and ways of listening: very short or very long concerts, mystery programmes, guided concerts, concerts-cum-festivals where the audience is free to roam between stages (the famous Liquid Room performed all over Europe).
Ictus has shared, and sometimes amplified, current questions about the future of contemporary music. Initially led by conductor Georges-Elie Octors, at a time when ensembles saw themselves as mini-orchestras made up of highly technical soloists, Ictus mutated into an “electric orchestra” and hired, for example, a regular sound engineer as an instrumentalist. It then became a multifaceted collective of creative musicians, dedicated to experimental music in the broadest sense. The story isn’t over.
Among the twenty or so CDs released by Ictus, both albums devoted to Fausto Romitelli on the Cyprès label have been particularly influential due to their interpretation and their bold mixes. Ictus now shares its releases between the SubRosa label and the Bandcamp platform, while documenting its work on YouTube.
Ictus is conducting an advanced Master’s programme that focuses on contemporary music interpretation, in collaboration with the Ghent School of Arts.

Johanna Vargas, soprano (Argentine) – Artist in residence at Royaumont (2021-2024)
Collaborations with Royaumont :
2021 : concert Countless et concert Stimmung au Festival de Royaumont.
Johanna Vargas numbers among the most versatile and sought-after sopranos in the field of contemporary music. In 2020, the Colombian soprano performed with the Neue Vocalsolisten Stuttgart alongside the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under Sir Simon Rattle. A member of the Vocalsolisten since 2020, she has also featured regularly at internationally renowned festivals for contemporary music, performing under the baton of Dennis Russell Davies in Naples, with Peter Rundel and the Ensemble Musikfabrik in Cologne, at the ManiFeste IRCAM in Paris, with the Ensemble Recherche at the Witten Days for Contemporary Chamber Music, and being a regular fixture at the ECLAT Festival for contemporary music in Stuttgart.
Boasting comprehensive training and experience in genres ranging from bel canto to pop music, Vargas commands a range of vocal expression that brought her critical, popular and competitive success from a very early age. In 2015, she was awarded the Hanns Eisler Performance Prize in Berlin, followed in 2018 by the John Cage Prize in Halberstadt and a performer’s scholarship at NUNC!3, the third edition of the Northwestern University New Music Conference (NUNC) and Festival in Chicago.
Johanna Vargas’ vocal beauty and coloratura virtuosity is matched by a compelling physical and acting presence that is equally at home in theatrical and experimental performance environments as it is with the nuanced demands of chamber and solo performance in the concert hall.
This versatility has led to performances with the SWR Vokalensemble at the Salzburg Festspiel, Frankfurt’s biennial cresc… Festival for contemporary music and the Musikfest at the Berlin Philharmonic Hall, as well as with the Ensemble Cantando at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. Vargas gives voice to her own artistic initiative in regular performances as one half of the duo LAB51, in partnership with the pianist Magdalena Cerezo.
Vargas’ wealth of experience in opera and music theatre underlines her versatility as a performing artist, covering the full gamut of periods and styles from classical to modern repertoire. In 2020, she appeared in Irrgarten as part of the Neue Vocalsolisten’s “Aus dem Home Studio” (From the Home Studio) series, and in Malte Giessen’s Frame as part of that year’s Eclat Festival in Stuttgart.
In 2018, she performed in Beat Furre´s Opera Begehren (Desire) at the Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires. Her experience in classical operatic repertoire incudes the title rôles in Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel and Handel’s Rodelinda, as well as Zerlina in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Miss Jessel in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw, and the sorceress in Purcell’s Dido and Æneas.
Johanna Vargas has worked with such renowned artists as Sir Simon Rattle, Emilio Pomárico, Peter Rundel, Marcus Creed, Beat Furrer, Hans-Joachim Hespos, Bernhard Lang, Johannes Kreidler, Carola Bauckholt, Hans-Joachim Hespos, Wolfgang Rihm, Malte Giessen, Juliana Hodkinson, Sarah Maria Sun, Donatienne Michel-Dansac, Andreas Eduardo Frank, Julia Mihaly, Thomas Hampson, Evelyn Tubb and Anthony Rooley, as well as with many of the highest-profile contemporary music ensembles, including the Ascolta Ensemble, the Ensemble Recherche and the Ensemble Musikfabrik. The fruits of these collaborations, many of them world premières, can be heard in Vargas’ numerous CD and broadcast recordings (Deutschlandfunk Kultur, WDR, Naxos, SWR).
Johanna Vargas is a graduate of the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá, the University of the Arts in Bremen and the Universities of Music in Karlsruhe and Stuttgart, having studied under leading artists including Hartmut Höll, Mitsuko Shirai, Angelika Luz and Georg Nigl. She has lectured in contemporary vocal performance at the University of Music in Karlsruhe since 2018.

Marie Ythier, violoncelle (France) – Artist in residence at Royaumont (2021-2024)
Collaborations antérieures avec Royaumont :
2021 : concert Countless au Festival de Royaumont.
A classical musician, also committed to premiering works by composers of her generation, cellist Marie Ythier has already recorded five albums, including Une Rencontre (An encounter) around R. Schumann & T. Murail’s cello pieces (Divine Art Recordings, Naxos 2019) all critically acclaimed. Trained at the Paris and Lyon Conservatoires – CNSM, she graduated with a master’s degree (soloist with honours) studying in Anne Gastinel’s class, obtained a postgraduate Artist Diploma from the Paris Conservatory and participated in masterclasses with Philippe Muller, Heinrich Schiff, Miklos Perenyi and Gary Hoffman. She regularly performs in prestigious French and international venues and festivals (Paris Philharmonie, Dijon Auditorium. Kuhmo Festival, FIMC Lima, Suona Francese/Suona Italiano, the festival Messiaen au Pays de la Meije, CMMAS of Morelia, CENART of Mexico, KKL Luzern…).Marie Ythier has collaborated with composers such as Ivo Malec, Gilbert Amy, Tristan Murail, Pierre Boulez… and has performed as a soloist under the direction of renowned conductors, including Pierre Boulez and Peter Csaba.
A devoted pedagogue, she teaches at the conservatory in Aulnay-sous-Bois, is guest professor at the National Conservatory in Lima (Peru) and gives master classes in France, Asia, and Latin America.
With her wide musical experience, Marie Ythier is an artist whose eclecticism and open mindedness are revealed in the particular interest that she gives to new music. She gladly plays repertoire from all periods, both as a chamber musician and as a soloist.
She has received prizes from numerous national and international competitions (1st prize at the Zonta Clubs cello competition, award winner from the Société Générale Mécénat Musical, Meyer Foundation, Adami…). Marie Ythier was a laureate of the Francis and Mica Salabert Foundation and the Fondation de France in 2015, was named Associated Artist by Adami, received sponsoring from Monceau Assurances in 2017, was a laureate of the foundation Cordes Sensibles for her disc Une Rencontre in 2018, and will be artist in residence at Singer-Polignac Foundation until 2020. She is now also a member of Collège Contemporain. She is now artist in residency at Royaumont Foundation since 2024.
Since 2019, Marie Ythier has played a Bernardel cello, loaned to her by the association Talents et Violoncelles.


Ten composers


• Individual lessons (2 with each composer) ;
• Group lessons (2 with each composer);
• Video conference sessions between the ensemble, the invited professional soloists and the composers, before the works are handed over;
• Presentation by each composer of his or her career and work;
• Some specific instruments will benefit from a specific presentation, by videoconference, by the invited professional instrumentalists and singers in order to facilitate the writing process;
• Presentation of specific instrumental techniques by the instrumentalists and singers of the ensembles;
• Collective management session (creation of an ensemble, contemporary music network, etc.);
• Rehearsals in the form of workshops;
• Public concerts presenting the final works, with audiovisual recording.
This course is only for the creation of new works, specially written for the occasion.
Timetable for delivery of the score:
50% of the score on 1 June 2022
75% of the score on 1 July 2022, with a programme in English and French about the work (1200 characters including spaces)
95% of the score on 1 August 2022


The following instrumental formations are proposed for the writing of the pieces. Each candidate must indicate a choice of three preferred formations, which will be respected as far as possible. This indication is essential for the examination of the application: the application will be considered invalid if it is missing.

Formation 1: soprano, flutes, trumpet, violin, viola da gamba/Paetzold flutes, double bass, keyboards, percussion
Formation 2: soprano, flutes, violin, cello, double bass, keyboards, electric/acoustic guitar
Formation 3: flutes, trumpet, violin, cello, double bass, keyboards, electric/acoustic guitar, percussion
Formation 4: soprano, viola da gamba/Paetzold flutes, electric/acoustic guitar
Formation 5: soprano, viola da gamba, cello
Formation 6: trumpet, viola da gamba/Paetzold flutes, keyboards, electric guitar, percussion
Formation 7: flute, trumpet, violin, viola da gamba/Paetzold flutes, double bass
Formation 8: soprano (Johanna Vargas)
Formation 9: Cello (Marie Ythier)
Formation 10: 2 sopranos, trumpet, percussion


Selection on dossier

Elements required:
• Biography
• CV
• Motivation letter: highlighting skills and qualities, reasons for wanting to participate in the Academy, short ideas about the project. Please indicate the 3 desired numbers from the list of 10 courses proposed above [applications that do not mention this information will not be considered].
• Photo
• Three scores and the three corresponding recordings; good quality sound recordings are essential. Mock-ups are not accepted.

Application deadline: 9 January 2022
Results: 1 February 2022


From 19 August to 4 September 2022
15 days of training – 105 hours

Public presentation
Concerts on 4 September 2022 as part of the Royaumont Festival


> Intermittent du spectacle (French only):
for intermittents du spectacle (short-term contract workers in the music industry): by AFDAS if you fulfil the following conditions: two years of activity, 48 fee units (days) in France, justified by Congés Spectacles certificates and payslips;
If you are eligible for any of the above aids, you will pay only the registration fee, a total amount of 177 €.

> Salaried employee:
for salaried employees (full- or part-time): check with your employer its training programme;
If you are eligible for any of the above aids, you will pay only the registration fee, a total amount of 177 €.

> Jobseekers (French only):
for jobseekers: consult the local branch of Pôle Emploi;
If you are eligible for the above aid, you will pay only the registration fee, a total amount of 177 €.

> Scholarships:

The Association des Amis de Royaumont scholarships 2022 to composer born after 1st January 1992 (you must not be older than 30 on the first day of the Academy).
The Association des Amis de Royaumont awards scholarships who do not yet have a regular professional activity and whose situation meets the age limits detailed above, on artistic potential and financial situation.
These awards are decided by board meetings of the Association on the basis of written dossiers (CV [résumé] and letter of application to the Association des Amis de Royaumont explaining your situation).
If you are eligible for the above aid, you will pay only the registration fee, a total amount of 177 €.

Participants ineligible for any other form of financial aid will pay registration fees, membership to the Amis de Royaumont, access to the library and part of the accomodation fees, ie a total of 1277 €, whereas the Fondation covers complementary cost of training.

Deadline 9 January 2022



January 9


Add to Calendar