Musical Delicacies

— Early Music Concert Series —

Painting: Charles Mouton (1690)
for active participants

Masterclass for lutenists and guitarists

Masterclass with Joachim Held and Jan Čižmář, devoted to interpretation of the repertoire for lutes and guitars in Central Europe around 1700.

Saturday 25 March 2017, 09:00–18:00 — The Prague Conservatoire, Pálffy Palace, Valdštejnská 14, 118 00 Prague (Malá Strana), Czech Republic.


When Who
09:00–10:00 Barbora Hulcová
10:00–10:30 Matouš Hron
10:30–11:00 Alessio Pardo
11:00–11:30 Jan Stránský
11:30–12:00 Lunch break
12:00–12:30 Veronika Ronecová
12:30–13:00 Barbora Hulcová
13:00–13:30 Alessio Pardo
13:30–14:00 Przemysław Pogocki
14:00–14:30 Coffee break
14:30–15:00 Matouš Hron
15:00–15:30 Jan Stránský
15:30–16:00 Veronika Ronecová
16:00–16:30 Przemysław Pogocki

About the masterclass


The masterclass is open to all lute and guitar players who are interested in the performance and interpretation of music of any stylistic period. Regardless of the instrument, the goal is the same, to become familiar with the historical interpretation through examples of the period repertoire and to understand the essence of the compositions, aiming for a genuine communication that is understandable for the audience and touches their souls. To achieve this, we strive for mastery of many things, without which our interpretation would be incomplete. In addition to technical problems, we will therefore also address the historical context of the works, the study of historical sources, and the music rhetoric.

Conceptually the masterclass builds on the symposium “Ways to Silvius Leopold Weiss”, which took place 11–13 November 2016 at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in The Hague. It aspired to show at least some of the musical legacy that influenced the composer Silvius Leopold Weiss. A series of lectures and concerts shed light on interesting topics, and selected music echoed this vast and mostly forgotten creative legacy. Then, in 2017, the knowledge and experience of the 2016 conference are transferred to the level of practical working together with the students of the early music art schools in Brno, Bremen, The Hague and other institutions.


Active participation is offered to professional and semi-professional instrumentalists. We expect predominantly solo participation but would also welcome chamber ensembles (lute/guitar duos or lute/guitar with singers or other instruments). Both players of period instruments and modern guitar players can participate.

Participation in the masterclass comprises one lesson of 45 minutes duration and is free for students of Czech secondary and tertiary education arts schools. We also offer a limited number of places for other interested parties. For them, the course fee amounts to 500 CZK and comprises a non-transferable ticket for the concert on 24 March 2017 at 19:30. It is possible to enroll for additional lessons. Please fill out the on-line registration form.

Passive participation is recommended for anyone who is interested in Early Music and its performance practice. No registration required, free admission.

The official languages of the masterclass are English and German.


All musical periods are welcome, but the focus is on the repertoire for Baroque lute from Central European archives aound 1700. Any player interested in gaining experience with this repertoire and discovering the secrets of interpretation of the music that originated and was played here in the city where the masteclass takes place are invited to participate in the masterclass and to attend the concert Melante – the unknown Telemann .

During the masterclass it is possible to try-out various historical instruments under the guidance of the lecturer, and to study a variety of historical sources.

Photo: Joachim Held & Barbora Hulcová.
Joachim Held & Barbora Hulcová, masterclass within the project “German Renaissance Songs” (2015).

About the project

The masterclass is part of the project “Music by Czech and German composers from the lute collections of the library of the Cistercian Abbey in Grüssau (Krzeszów)”. The project includes a series of educational activities in cooperation with the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno, the University of the Arts Bremen and The Prague Conservatoire.

For information about further concerts and masterclasses in Prague, Brno, Bremen and other cities, please click here.

Photo: Joachim Held.

Joachim Held

Joachim Held was born in Hamburg. He received his musical education at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis as a student of Eugen Dombois and Hopkinson Smith, graduating with a “Diploma of Period Music” in 1988. From 1988–1990 he studied with Jürgen Hübscher at the Musik­hochschule Karlsruhe, graduating with a “Künstlerische Abschluss­prüfung”. In 1990 he was awarded the second prize at the Concours Musica Antiqua of the Flandern Festival in Brügge, marking the beginning of an an intensive international concert activity as soloist, chamber musician and continuo player.

Since 1993 (L’incoronazione di Poppea in the Salzburg Festival) Joachim Held performed regularly under the direction of Nikolaus Harnoncourt. Under Harnoncourt he also participated in the production of Henry Purcell’s King Arthur at the Salzburg Festival.

Since 1992 Joachim Held appeared with Il Giardino Armonico (Milan) in numerous concerts and on recordings (amongst others on the Vivaldi Album with Cecialia Bartoli for Decca). Since 2005 Joachim Held’s solo-CDs are released world-wide by Hänssler Classic. That year appeared the Schele Manuskript Hamburg 1619 CD (co-produced with the Swiss Radio DRS2 Zurich) and the Erfreuliche Lautenlust with music by Austrian composers for the Baroque lute. This CD was awarded the “Echo Klassik 2006” for the best solo recording of music from the 17th/18th centuries. In 2006 the CD German Lute Music of the Baroque was released by Hänssler Classic in cooperation with Deutschlandfunk Köln. In 2007 followed Che Soavita, Italian lute music of the Baroque, and in June 2008 Musique pour le roi, French lute musique of the Baroque. In 2010 he devoted the CD Merry Melancholy to the music of the time of John Dowland. His most recent CD with lute music by Johann Sebastian Bach was released in 2013, also by Hänssler Classic.

As a soloist Joachim Held appeared amongst others at the Musikfestspielen Potsdam Sanssouci, at the International Bach Festival Schaffhausen, the Schwetzinger Festspiele, the Bachfesttage in Köthen, the Concerti a San Maurizio in Milan, the Early Music Forum Budapest, the Hausmusik concert series of the ORF Vienna, the Lute Society London, the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Bachwoche Ansbach and the Händel festivals in Halle an der Saale and in Göttingen.

Since September 2007, Joachim teaches at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. In 2010 he was appointed Professor for Historical Lute Instruments at the Hochschule für Künste in Bremen.

Photo: Jan Čižmář

Jan Čižmář

Jan Čižmář is a versatile performer focusing on historical plucked instruments. He performs regularly in Europe, Asia and the USA with ensembles such as Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and Capella Cracoviensis, and under conductors such as Frans Brüggen, Christopher Hogwood, Giovanni Antonini, Yannick Nézet–Séguin and Christina Pluhar. He appears also as soloist with of baroque and renaissance repertoire, and is the artistic leader of the ensemble Plaisirs de Musique.

After graduation in guitar and musicology in his native Brno he studied at the Royal College of Music in London, where he began playing the lute in the class of Jakob Lindberg. He continued his studies at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague with the teachers Nigel North, Joachim Held, Mike Fentross and Christina Pluhar.

He was the founder and editor of the Czech guitar magazine Kytara and contributes regularly to other musical periodicals. He is also intensely involved with publishing and research activities in the field of early music.

Jan Čižmář taught lute and related instruments at the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice in Poland; currently he is teaching at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts (JAMU) in Brno, the Academy of Ancient Music at Masaryk University in Brno, and as a guest teacher at the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw. He regularly gives courses and masterclasses in Europe and overseas.

Thank you

The masterclass takes place with financial support from the Česko-německý fond budoucnosti.

Česko-německý fond budoucnosti Hudební fakulta JAMU v Brně Erasmus+