Phoebe Bognár is an Australian-born flutist, composer and improviser, presently based in Basel, Switzerland. Her approach to music is sewn with vibrancy and fluidity, and exllores a diverse range of genres, repertoire and styles.
Phoebe has performed across the globe, notably in the Bang on a Can Summer Festival (MASS MoCA, Massachusetts), International Contemporary Ensemble– Ensemble Evolution (New York, USA), Musiikin Aika Time of Music Festival (Viitasaari, Finland), Nief-Norf Summer Music Festival (Knoxville, Tennessee), Im flow der Apokalypse at Theater Basel (Basel, Switzerland), the Tyalgum Music Festival (New South Wales, Australia), Sydney Festival, the Queensland Music Festival, Dots and Loops Nonstop Festival (Brisbane), New Sounds Brisbane and Mirroring Minjerribah (Queensland, Australia). This year she was selected for the Australian Arts Orchestra Mentorship program (mentored by Aviva Endean) and the Ensemble Offspring Mentorship (mentored by Claire Edwardes).
Phoebe delights in collaborating with other musicians and engaging in interdisciplinary projects. She has performed and worked alongside several international artists including Kaija Saariaho, Brad Lubman, Michael Gordon, Anne LeBaron, Ken Thomson, Elisabeth Harnik and Erkki Veltheim and ensembles and orchestras including The London Improvisers Orchestra, Opera Queensland, Clocked Out Duo, Splinter Orchestra, Speak Percussion, Ecosono and Cadenza Chamber Players. She has been part of several chamber ensembles including Electrickery and the Strážná Věž Trio which received an honourable mention in the 2017 4MBS Chamber Prize.
In 2018, Phoebe completed her Bachelor of Music in flute performance at Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University under the tutelage of Virginia Taylor. She then proceeded to study with the flutist, author and pedagogue Trevor Wye at his ‘Flute Studio’ in England. This year she has commenced her Master of Arts majoring in Contemporary Music at Hochschüle für Musik Basel where she will be part of the ensemble zone expérimentale.
Phoebe is passionate about collaboration across genres, art forms and disciplines and delving into new and exciting ways of creative expression. The use of the voice, improvisation, electronics, visuals and activism are central to her creative practice and projects. Phoebe has received generous support from the Ian Potter Cultural Trust, Hirschmann Stipendium, Australia Council for the Arts , Arts Queensland, Create NSW and The David Cubbin Memorial Fund for her studies and projects abroad.
As a composer, Phoebe experiments with traditional notation, graphic scores, site-specific composition and installations. Her works have been played by various artists in events and venues including the Theater Basel (Switzerland), Queensland Conservatorium New Music Ensemble, Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University, Nief-Norf Summer Festival ‘Norf-Space’ (Knoxville, Tennessee), and in the Mirroring Minjerribah exhibition (Brisbane, Australia). She holds a passion for expanding musical horizons through performing new works and collaborating with composers from diverse musical and cultural backgrounds. She has performed numerous world-premiers to date, including works by Elizabeth Shearon, Darian Donovan Thomas, Sophia Jani, Soo Yeon Lyuh, Matīss Čudars, Gerard Brophy, Catherine Likhuta, Julian Day and Jasmin Leung.
In addition to her activities as an artist, Phoebe is an activist, endeavouring to include art as a vehicle for activism. She is also the founder and artistic director of Women of Noise (WoN), formerly known as ‘Noisy Women’, a concert celebrating international Women’s Day. Phoebe also is a passionate climate activist and has been part of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition (AYCC) since 2013. In 2017, she coordinated an immersive art installation outside Queensland Parliament with the AYCC. She is also the founder of Musicians Against Climate Modulation, a collective of musicians who endeavour to use the positive influence of music as activism against climate change.
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Photos also provided on request. Website photos taken by Katherina Beale.
Phoebe acknowledges the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation as the first inhabitants and the Traditional Custodians of the lands where she was born, paying respect to Elders past, present and emerging, and their ongoing connection to country. Sovereignty was never ceded.