© Peter Fischli/Lucerne Festival
© Peter Fischli/Lucerne Festival

Every summer, Academy Director Wolfgang Rihm conducts together with Dieter Ammann a two-week Composer Seminar. During the first week, participants discuss their works with Rihm, Ammann and other guests in plenary sessions that are open to the public as well as in one-on-one discussions. They then proceed to rehearse and prepare their scores with the accomplished musicians of the IEMA (International Ensemble Modern Academy) and the young conductors of the Contemporary-Conducting Program, ultimately introducing them to Festival audiences. In this way, the participants receive valuable feedback on the practical implementation of their musical ideas.

The Korean composer Unsuk Chin will take the place of Wolfgang Rihm in the summer of 2024 and direct the Composer Seminars together with Dieter Ammann. Due to health reasons, Wolfgang Rihm is unable to be present in Lucerne.

“You must learn composing through praxis”
Wolfgang Rihm

“One always hears it asserted: ‘Young composers all do the same thing.’ On the other hand, my experience is of different worlds, as if they came from different planets,” says Wolfgang Rihm, describing his impression of the next generation of composers. This variety of voices likewise characterizes the Composer Seminar, which he founded in 2016. Rihm has no desire to prescribe aesthetic dogmas but wants to encourage “the articulation of one’s own voice.” Which is why he consciously chooses “composers from different states of development and consciousness.” He adds: “I gather people together from whom, I believe, a kind of conversation can emerge – a discourse based on different aesthetic and cultural preconditions.”

Glencore International AG – Partner Composer Seminar

Composer Seminar 2024
  • Participants 2024

    Christoph Baumgarten (DE) | Sebastian Black (GB / NZ) | Che Buford (US) | Coral Douglas (US) | Hyeokjae Kim (KR) | Seungju Noh (KR) | Ingrid Saldaña (CL) | Tianyu Zou (CN)

    Anniversary Edition of the Composer Seminar for orchestra
    Yixuan Hu (CN) | Eden Lonsdale (DE / UK) | Kenta Onoda (JP) | Jose Luis Valdivia Arias (ES)

  • Participants 2023

    Kristupas Bubnelis (LT) | José Manuel Castro Brandão (PT) | Bo Huang (CN) | Sofia Ouyang (US) | Francisco Pais (PT) | Alyssa Regent (FR) | Lukas Stamm (CH) | Abigél Varga (HU)

  • Participants 2022

    Olivia Bennett (US) | Pengyi Li (CN) | Zhenyan Li (CN) | Minzuo Lu (CN) | Aregnaz Martirosyan (AM) | Lila Quillin (US) | Hugo Van Rechem (FR) | Raimonda Ziukaite (LT) 

  • Participants 2021

    Arnau Brichs (ES) | Tyson Davis (US) | Lanqing Ding (CN) | Theophilus Finkel (UK) | Anton Koshelev (UA) | Guillem Palomar Anglí (ES) | Daniil Posazhennikov (RU) | Senay Uğurlu (TR)

  • Participants 2019

    Dahae Boo (DE) | Sarah Lianne Lewis (GB) | Alessandro Batticci (AT) | Christoph Blum (CH) | Adrian Laugsch (DE) | Żaneta Rydzewska (PL) | Polina Korobkova (RU) | Michael Seltenreich (US)

  • Participants 2018

    Samir Amarouch (FR) | Nathanael Gubler (CH) | Andrew Haig (US) | Lise Morrison (NL) | Alsu Nigmatullina (RU) | Andrés Nuño de Buen (DE) | Alex Vaughan (DE) | Ivan Vukosavlijevic (NL) | Yiqing Zhu (CN)

  • Participants 2017

    Elias Jurgschat (DE) | Hanan Hadžajlić (BA) | Adrien Trybucki (FR) | Deok-Vin Lee (AT) | Alex Nante (FR) | Adrian Kleinlosen (DE) | Bianca Bongers (NL) | Leander Ruprecht (DE) | Yu Kuwabara (JP) | Sonja Mutić (RS)

  • Participants 2016

    Piyawat Louilarpprasert (TH) | Georgia Koumará (GR) | Nicolas Kuhn (DE) | Josep Planells (ES) | Kathrin A. Denner (DE) | Franz Rieks (DE) | Victor Coltea (RO) | Anna Korsun (UA) | Patrick Brennan (IE/GB) | Bella Máté (HU) | Michaela Catranis (US) | Mark Simpson (UK)