Albie van Schalkwyk,
BMus Cape Town, PDM LRAM (Accompanying) VPLM UNISA, PhD UFS
Albie van Schalkwyk has established himself as performer in a number of fields over the past 30 years. One of the leading chamber musicians and vocal accompanists in South Africa, he has also performed as soloist with SA orchestras, performed solo recitals, given master classes for singers and accompanists, worked as a music producer for the SABC, and arranged music for various combinations, including Broadway musicals and operas for 2 pianos and orchestral pieces for 3 to 8 pianos. He was appointed Associate Professor in Piano and Chamber Music at the College of Music, UCT, in 2009.
After completing his B.Mus. degree at the University of Cape Town with Lamar Crowson, he spent five years in London studying with Geoffrey Parsons, Gwenneth Pryor and Martino Tirimo. During this period he won the UNISA Overseas Scholarship as well as first prize in the SABC Music Prize Piano Competition. Upon his return to SA he took up a position as Official Accompanist and Producer at the SABC in Cape Town and became the regular partner of many South African singers and instrumentalists in concert and in the recording studio. He has been a member of several well-known SA ensembles, e.g. the Endler Trio and the Potch Trio and a founder member of The Chamber Music Society, and appeared as guest artists with others like the Rosamunde String Quartet and the Sontonga Quartet.
His partnership with Austrian cellist Heidi Litschauer has produced two major tours through South Africa as well as annual visits to Austria where he is invited to play concerts and work as repetiteur at the summer school of the International Neuberg Kulturtage since 1988. He has also performed all over South Africa with visiting overseas artists such as Elly Ameling (soprano), Maarten Koningsberger (baritone), Peter-Lukas Graf (flute), Emma Johnson (clarinet), Christian Altenburger (violin) and Raphael Wallfisch (cello). He was on the staff of the summer school of the International Neuberg Kulturtage in Austria from 1988-2011, and has taught chamber music at the Franschhoek Chamber Music Workshops and at the Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival.
His interest in vocal music and the art song in particular has led to many fulfilling concert partnerships with singers, culminating in the formation in 1994 of The Songmakers’ Guild, a Cape Town society which provides a regular platform to performers in the field of the art song. He has presented workshops and classes for singers and accompanists at several SA universities and spent his 2002/3 sabbatical working as repetiteur for the Vocal Department of the Mozarteum Music University in Salzburg, Austria.
He has been a regular panel member of several South African competitions, including the Chamber Music Competition in Stellenbosch, the UNISA National Piano Competition and the SAMRO National Singing Competition. He was the 2009 winner of the Huberte Rupert Prize, awarded by the SA Academy of Arts and Sciences to him for his contribution to ensemble playing and teaching over the past 30 years. He completed his Ph.D. in music at the University of the Free State in May 2012.