Ensemble Contemporain HEM/HEMU


The Ensemble Contemporain des Haute écoles de musique de Suisse Romande was created for contemporary music projects that bring together the Lausanne and Geneva Universities of Music. It comprises students from the Ensemble Contemporain de l’HEMU (Lausanne) and the Ensemble 21 de la HEM (Geneva). The ensemble is mainly composed of musicians doing their Masters, as well as students who are called to practice contemporary repertoire. Its variable dimension allows it to explore a vast repertoire from 1950 to our time.

In Lausanne, composer and conductor William Blank has assumed the artistic and musical direction of the Ensemble Contemporain de l’HEMU since its creation in 2003. In Geneva, the Ensemble 21 was founded under the name “Ensemble contemporain du Conservatoire” at the initiative of Professor Jean Jacques Balet. It was renamed “Ensemble 21 de la HEM” in September 2016 and its coordination was entrusted to conductor Elena Schwarz, who directs it in alternation with guest conductors.

Together, these two ensembles have collaborated on major contemporary creations of the past fifty years, receiving advice from their respective composers, and work with an increasing amount of partners. French conductor Pierre Bleuse will be directing the Ensemble Contemporain des Haute écoles de musique de Suisse Romande for the project “Le Concours de Genève à l’honneur: compositeurs du jury 2017”, organized in collaboration with the Geneva Competition.