Artistic Director since 2012
Ludwig Böhme loves vocal music – be it as singer, conductor, lecturer or arranger.
He was born in 1979 in Rodewisch in former East Germany, from 1989 till 1998 he was a member of the St. Thomas boys choir in Leipzig, and after finishing as a chorister 2002 he worked as assistant of the Director of Music of St. Thomas till 2002. He initially studied orchestral conducting, but then changed to choral conducting at the Leipzig Academy for Music and Theatre “Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy”. After gaining his diploma with distinction he continued his studies to reach public performance standard. Among his teachers were Georg Christoph Biller and Horst Neumann. Further impulses were supplied by courses with the King’s Singers, Ton Koopman and Morten Schuldt-Jensen.
Ludwig Böhme is one of the founders, and the baritone, of the Leipzig Calmus Ensemble, one of the leading German vocal ensembles. Calmus gives about 70 concerts a year all over the world, has its own music publishing business, won the important international competitions, and 2009 was commended by ECHO Klassik and 2019 by OPUS Klassik.
Ludwig Böhme is also active as conductor. He has been directing the Leipzig chamber choir “Josquin des Préz” since 2002, which focuses primarily on the music of the Renaissance but whose repertoire does also include later periods. From 2004 Ludwig Böhme has been instigating, as its artistic director, the concert series “Josquin – the Project”, with the first complete performance of the latter’s entire oeuvre in St Thomas, Leipzig. Though basically an a cappella ensemble, there is regular co-operation with orchestras, with a repertoire ranging from Claudio Monteverdi’s “Vespers of the Virgin Mary” up to Francis Poulenc’s “Gloria” and with a focus on the oratories and cantatas by Johann Sebastian Bach. In 2018 the chamber choir “Josquin des Préz” won a 1st price in the German Choral Competition.
More than 1000 concerts have taken him to the major music festivals in Germany, to many European countries, North and South America. Recordings for CDs, radio and television bear witness to this activity.
Ludwig Böhme teaches courses for vocal ensembles and has been Lecturer for Conducting at Music Academies in Leipzig and Halle/Saale. He has also achieved success as arranger and composer (Contemporary A cappella Recording Award 2004).
Since 2012 he is the artistic director of the Leipziger Synagogalchor.
Helmut Klotz was born in 1935 in Oederan. As a child, he learned violin, piano, and clarinet. From 1950 he studied cello, piano, and singing at the Dresden Music Academy and from 1954 to 1960 cello and voice at the University of Music in Dresden under Karl Grosch and Helga Fischer. 1958/59 Helmut Klotz was a cellist in the Dresdener Staatskapelle.
In 1961 Helmut Klotz was engaged as a lyrical and character tenor at the Leipzig Opera. As a permanent member of the ensemble until 2000 and as a guest until 2003, he represented more than 110 roles in more than 2,750 performances in Leipzig and at national and international guest performances. In addition, extensive activities as concert singer, especially as the Evangelist in Bach’s oratorios in numerous performances with the Leipziger Thomanerchor and the Dresdener Kreuzchor. In 1985, Helmut Klotz was awarded the title of “Kammersänger”. Since 2000 he has been an honorary member of the Leipzig Opera.
From 1972 to 2012, Helmut Klotz was the artistic director and cantor of the Leipziger Synagogalchor, which he has been associated with before as a tenor soloist. Under his leadership the choir has distinguished itself as an ensemble of international stature.
For his artistic and cultural-political work with the Leipziger Synagogalchor, Helmut Klotz was awarded the Art Prize of the German Democratic Republic (1981), the Honorary Medal of the City of Leipzig (1998), the Order of Merit of the Free State of Saxony (1998), and the Commander’s Cross of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (2005). Together with the Leipziger Synagogalchor, he was awarded the Star of International Friendship in gold in 1988.
The entry in the Golden Book of Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael, the Jewish National Fund, in 2007, dignified his achievements in terms of international understanding. As part of the concert tour of the Leipziger Synagogalchor to Poland in autumn 2011, Helmut Klotz was bestowed the Honoris Gratia Order of the City of Kraków for his commitment to German-Polish relations.