Phoebe Bognár is an Australian-born flutist, composer and improviser, presently based in Basel, Switzerland. Her approach to creativity is sewn with vibrancy and fluidity, and explores a diverse range of artistic entities, mediums and styles.
Phoebe has performed across the globe, notably in the Warszawska Jesień/Warsaw Autumn (Warsaw, Poland), Ultima Contemporary Music Festival (Oslo, Norway), Bang on a Can Summer Festival (MASS MoCA, Massachusetts), Darmstadt Ferienkurse (Darmstadt, Germany), International Contemporary Ensemble– Ensemble Evolution (New York, USA), Musiikin Aika Time of Music Festival (Viitasaari, Finland), Zeiträume Festival (Basel, Switzerland), Nief-Norf Summer Music Festival (Knoxville, Tennessee), Im flow der Apokalypse at Theater Basel (Basel, Switzerland), the Tyalgum Music Festival (Tyalgum, Australia), Sydney Festival, the Queensland Music Festival and Dots and Loops Nonstop Festival (Brisbane, Australia).
Phoebe delights in collaborating with other musicians and engaging in interdisciplinary projects. She has worked alongside several formidable artists including Kaija Saariaho, Beat Furrer, Michael Gordon, Ashot Sarkissjan and Anne LeBaron and ensembles and orchestras including Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Recherche, Opera Queensland, Speak Percussion, Clocked Out Duo, Splinter Orchestra, The London Improvisers Orchestra, The Fischermann’s Orchestra, 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. Her current chamber projects include iipm project, kinnect kollektiv and trio ê3.
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. In Autumn 2020, she commenced her Master of Arts majoring in Contemporary Music at Hochschüle für Musik Basel where she is part of the ensemble zone expérimentale, Sonic Space and Ensemble DIAGONAL. Other professional development opportunities include the Australian Arts Orchestra Mentorship program (mentored by Aviva Endean) and the Ensemble Offspring Mentorship (mentored by Claire Edwardes).
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), Darmstadt Ferienkurse (Germany), Queensland Conservatorium New Music Ensemble, Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University, Nief-Norf Summer Music 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 Anna Sowa, 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, using her art as a vehicle for change. 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.
Through art, Phoebe endeavours to weave new connections and understandings– to each other and the world we live in.
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Photos also provided on request.
Website photos taken by Katherina Beale, Alicja Rytowska and Cristina Arcos.
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.