The Slovenia Times

Martina Batič new principal conductor of Gulbenkian Choir

Martina Batič, the new principal conductor of the Gulbenkian Choir in Lisbon. Photo: Pedro Pina

Slovenian conductor Martina Batič has been named the new principal conductor of the Gulbenkian Choir in Lisbon. She will direct the choir for three seasons, starting in September.

Batič, 45, is considered one of the most promising choral conductors of her generation. She is known for her versatility in directing a wide-ranging repertoire, from a cappella pieces to choral-symphonic works.

"She demonstrated this prowess during last year's Gulbenkian Music season, when conducting the Gulbenkian Choir and Orchestra in Bach's St Matthew's Passion and the Gulbenkian Choir in two a cappella performances," the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation said in announcing her appointment.

Aside from working with the Gulbenkian Orchestra and Choir, her engagements for the current and coming seasons include collaborations with the Netherlands Chamber Choir, Netherlands Radio Choir, Casa da Música Choir, Choeur de Radio France, Berlin Radio Choir, NDR Vokalensemble Hamburg, Chorwerk Ruhr, Zürcher Sing-Akademie and Hungarian Radio Choir.

Batič has performed as a guest conductor with many renowned choirs such as the RIAS Kammerchor, the Bavarian Radio Choir, and the Swedish Radio Choir. She has also performed at festivals including the Baltic Sea Festival Stockholm, Ultima Oslo, and the festivals in Montpellier and Saint-Denis.

She studied at the Ljubljana Music Academy and the University of Music and Theatre in Munich. In 2004, she graduated in choral conducting. She received the Eric Ericson Award in Sweden in 2006 and the Slovenian Prešeren Fund Prize in 2019.

Between 2018 and 2022, she was the principal conductor of the French radio choir, and before that, the artistic director of the Slovenian Philharmonic Choir.

As the principal conductor of the Gulbenkian Choir, Martina Batič succeeds Michel Corboz, who conducted the Portuguese choir for over fifty years.

Founded in 1964 by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Coro Gulbenkian has a full symphonic formation of around 100 singers, but it can also appear as a smaller vocal ensemble.


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