Born in Flensburg in 1980, Ruth Velten took a keen interest in music at an early age. Raised in a family of musicians, she received her earliest musical training on the piano at the age of four before later discovering the saxophone. After earning a degree in music, with a saxophone major, at Berlin’s University of the Arts (UdK) and the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Köln, she subsequently completed a saxophone performance degree with honors (Konzertexamen) from the Hanns Eisler Musikhochschule in Berlin. She gained valuable musical insight in particular from Eberhard Feltz, William Forman, Jacques Ammon, Ib Hausmann and Cuarteto Casals.
In her work and her choice of repertoire, Ruth Velten places special emphasis on original classical compositions as well as New Music for saxophone. The internationally acclaimed saxophonist is frequently praised in the press for her rich timbre and virtuoso playing.
She attracted attention as a first-prize winner at national and international competitions, including the German Music Competition, the International Music Competition for Contemporary Music in Kraków, Poland, the Classic Music Award Switzerland and the International Chamber Music Competition in Almere, the Netherlands. In addition, she won a scholarship from the International Ensemble Modern Academy in Frankfurt and Deutsche Stiftung Musikleben.
She regularly performs as a soloist as well as a chamber musician at renowned festivals, among them Warsaw Autumn, the World New Music Festival, the Ultraschall Festival Berlin, the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and Festival de México. She collaborates with various ensembles and orchestras, including Ensemble Modern, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Deutsche Oper Berlin and German Radio Philharmonic Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern, under leading conductors such as Péter Eötvös, Sakari Oramo, Ingo Metzmacher, Markus Stenz and John Storgĺrds.
Ruth Velten regularly gives master classes and passes her expert knowledge on to young saxophonists at conservatories and universities, including the Hochschule für Musik Lübeck, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Columbia University in New York City and at Berlin’s University of the Arts.
To encourage new works for saxophone, she works closely with composers such as Sofia Gubaidulina, Gordon Kampe, Fabien Lévy, Johannes Kreidler and Georg Katzer. Since 2013 she has been the director of the IM FOKUS concert series for New Music in Berlin, in which she undertakes New Music productions of her own.
Ruth Velten is a founding member of Ensemble LUX:NM and soprano saxophonist of the sonic.art saxophone quartet. Her discography includes recordings on the GENUIN classics label. Many of her performances have been broadcast on German stations BR, HR, SWR, Deutschlandfunk, NDR, WDR and rbb.
Photography: Anna Witzel
The Artist's Homepage: http://www.ruthvelten.com
Works for Saxophone Solo and Electronics by Jodlowski, Reich, Berio, Kampe, Lévy and Mâche
Ruth Velten, Saxophone