Thanks to their long-maturing intuition for one another, the four instrumentalists effortlessly make music “as if with a single voice”. They play in the knowledge that they are all totally present at all times, able to react spontaneously to improvised interjections. Each of them knows from the others that these reactions “come off” musically and that each free phrase will be followed by perfectly timed instrumental concord.

To help aspiring musicians gain more self-confidence in the practice of improvisation, the musicians of the Janoska Ensemble have for some years now been holding workshops, in Hong Kong for instance, where the Janoska Style has won many fans among students of classical music. The four musicians put a lot of energy into teaching practical playing techniques and explaining the music theory that underlies free invention. Their aim is to bring the art of improvisation closer to classical music, now that the “know-how” of musically coherent freedom in “serious” music has largely disappeared.

The Janoska Ensemble is in a kind of continuous “improvisation mission” in terms of workshops and master classes: This teaching activity led the four musicians, among others to the Kronberg Academy, the Amadeus Festival Vienna or to the Menuhin Festival in Gstaad. The reactions of the course participants were euphoric throughout: The collaboration with the Janoska Ensemble – so their general opinion – gave them much more confidence to improvise freely in the classic context.

To date some 100 music students on four continents have bidden farewell to their four short-term teachers from Vienna with radiant smiles. This work as ambassadors of the rejuvenated art of improvisation, which has won them so many new friends, can be set beside their great concert performances as an additional cross-cultural achievement of the Janoska Ensemble

Der Janoska Style Workshop an der Gstaad String Academy