Natalia Kotarba

Natalia Kotarba is a Polish violinist born in Cracow, currently based in Brussels. She holds degrees Cum Laude from the Academy of Music in Cracow and from the Royal Conservatory in Brussels, where she also pursued her Concertmusicus (artist diploma) programme in the class of Philippe Graffin. From January 2019  with  « Karski » string quartet, she is also joining the String Quartet Studio at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester. Natalia embraces keenly all aspects of a musician’s life. Among the artists she has had the opportunity to collaborate with in a chamber music setting are Jean-Claude Vanden Eynden, Philippe Graffin, Gordan Nikolic, Krzysztof Penderecki and the Oxalys Ensemble. She has appeared at music festivals such as Midis-Minimes and Ysaye’s Knokke in Belgium, Harmos Festival in Portugal, Istanbul Music Festival in Turkey, Elba Isola Musica d’Europa festival. She is part of the Belgian Sonos Ensemble, artist-in-residence in Tongeren (Belgium) for the season 2018/19. Natalia has also collaborated with orchestras such as Deutsches Radio Kammerorchester, Le Concert Olympique and Polish Art Philharmonic. She has had the honour to perform at Bozar in the presence of the monarchs of Belgium and the Netherlands during the celebration of the 60th anniversary of Benelux in June 2018. Natalia is a laureate of the Polish National Chamber Music Competition in Bydgoszcz in piano trio category (2014) and a laureate of La Fondation Chopin, a Belgian institution who awards prizes for succesful music students at the beginning of their careers (2017). Most recently, as a member of the newly formed Karski Quartet she has been awarded the Grand Prix of the 4th International Music Competition Triomphe de L’Art in Brussels (November 2018). She has had the opportunity to develop her skills in masterclasses with renowned artists and pedagogues such as Miriam Fried, David Waterman, Alasdair Beatson, or Quatuor Ebene. She has also been strongly influenced by jazz improvisation lessons she took as a teenager with the renowned Polish jazzman Jarosław Śmietana. Natalia finds it important in her work to be open to different styles and kinds of music, which helps her create personal and honest interpretations of musical works. She is also a dedicated teacher and a great enthusiast of music-educational projects which help introduce children and young adults to the beautiful world of music. In August 2018 she served on the faculty during the Masterclasses for young musicians in Oslo, teaching violin and chamber music.

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