Tamuz was created in Berlin in 2017 as both a research project and a sound laboratory. Using original scores and historical documents, the members of the ensemble try to achieve both a faithful and a personal interpretation. By becoming familiar with the traditions and tastes of the past and by reading between the lines of the musical text, they try to engage with the music they play in a new way, allowing expression to be the leading principle of their performances even this means diverging from modern concert hall and recording practices. How was music played in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and is it possible to rediscover means of expression that were lost in the twentieth century? Casting a wide net, the ensemble works on a very diverse repertoire including the “Art of Fugue” by Johann Sebastian Bach, the string quintets of Schubert, Onslow and Boccherini, but also arrangements of Lieder by Beethoven or Fanny Mendelssohn and arias of Mozart. Collaborating with singers and other instrumentalists, the ensemble seeks to bring forgotten works or neglected composers back on to the stage and to cast a new light on each of the pieces they play.
During the last few years, Tamuz has played in Holland, Switzerland, Italy and Germany, including their debut concert at the Konzerthaus Berlin earlier this year. In 2022, the ensemble was invited to spend some time at the Centro di musica antica Ghislieri in Pavia, Italy, in order to continue their research into romantic performance practice in collaboration with Professor Clive Brown. The musicians are currently sponsored by the Zentrum für Alte Musik Köln through their program "Zamus : advanced", which will allow them to develop several new projects in the upcoming months.
By commissioning works by young composers, the ensemble also seeks to establish connections between the music of past centuries and the music of today.
Diego Castelli is an Italian violinist with a profound interest in musicology and historical performance practice. He is a founding member of the Tamuz Ensemble and a regular guest with leading European orchestras such as Le Cercle de l’Harmonie, l’Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, Les Musiciens du Prince, the Ghislieri Choir and Consort (also as concertmaster), La Barocca (leader of second violins), La Divina Armonia (as concertmaster), Cremona Antiqua, the Orchestra Sinfonica Leonore and the orchestra of Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova. He is a member of Geneva Camerata and has been invited as leader of second violins to the orchestra of Teatro San Carlo in Naples. After graduating from the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory of Milan, Diego studied with Pavel Vernikov, Igor Volochine and later with Alessandro Moccia at the Hogeschool of Gent (Belgium), where he obtained a post-graduate diploma in 2018. Diego is the winner of the Città di Bardolino 2016 violin competition.
iConstance Ricard was born in Paris and lives in Berlin, where she plays baroque and modern cello in several ensembles. She studied in Paris with Marc Coppey and later in Leipzig with Peter Bruns. Inspired by an orchestra project led by Jordi Saval and Riccardo Minasi, she went on to study baroque cello with Balázs Máté and then with Jan Freiheit, graduating from the Universität der Künste in Berlin. She works regularly as a guest with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, the Konzerthausorchester Berlin and with the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin. She also occasionally works with European chamber orchestras such as Geneva Camerata and Les Dissonances. In 2016 she played the premiere of Hermann Keller's hour-long solo piece for a speaking cellist “Ihr sollt die Wahrheit erben”, which she has since performed several times, in particular in 2019 for the German radio in Cologne during the Forum Neuer Musik Festival. But the core of her artistic activity lies in chamber music, which is what led her to become a musician in the first place. In 2017, she started to delve into the string trio repertoire by creating the Franz Trio, with which she has since played concerts all over Germany. Constance is also one of the founding members of the Tamuz Ensemble. A dedicated teacher, Constance has pupils in Berlin and coaches amateur orchestras all over Europe.ft 4
Swiss cellist Katharina Litschig works with orchestras and ensembles of many different characters, as chamber music partner and as continuo cellist all over Europe. She began her studies with Roel Dieltiens in Zürich and then went on to study in Leipzig with Peter Bruns. Inspired by early music courses with Kristin von der Goltz, she took an interest in early music and historical performance practice at a young age. Later on she studied continuo playing and the solo repertoire of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries with Jan Freiheit. Katharina is now co-principal cellist of the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, one of the leading German ensembles for historical performance practice, and she is also part of numerous chamber music ensembles and is active as a soloist. These professional engagements are supplemented by her continuing interest in research into performance practice: she is member of Spira Mirabilis and of the Tamuz Ensemble. During the lockdown caused by Coronavirus, she recorded Bach Sixth suite and played a series of concerts in retirement homes in her hometown.
Avishai Chameides has been with the Tamuz Ensemble since its beginning. His interest in period instruments and gut strings led him to connect with other musicians who shared the same desire to experiment. His work with musicians well-established on the historical performance music scene has led him to complete a master’s degree at the Frankfurt Music Academy under the guidance of Petra Müllejans and Mechthild Karkow. During his time in Frankfurt, Avishai was also deeply influenced by other members of the faculty such as Kristin von der Golz, Michael Schneider, Heidi Gröger, Dane Roberts and Jan van Hoecke. Avishai Chameides is an active chamber music player, especially as violist of the Noga Quartet, which won first prize in the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition in 2015, and which performs all over the world. He also plays regularly in some of the leading chamber orchestras in Europe such as the Freiburger Barockorchester, Kammerakademie Potsdam, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen and Geneva Camerata. Finally, Avishai is also an enthusiastic chamber music teacher in various conservatories in Italy.