The New York Times credits Rui Lopes as “the richly gifted bassoonist”. Gramophone concurs: “highly musical and virtuoso”. Although Rui Lopes only began studying the bassoon at eighteen, his musical temperament and virtuosity were quickly recognized and received many awards, including first prize in the prestigious Estoril International Competition. One of the most promising bassoonists of his generation, he shares his great passion for music with concert audiences all over the world.
Solo and Chamber Music
Rui has appeared as a soloist with Zurich Symphony Orchestra, Basel Symphony Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Czech Chamber Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra Kremlin, Finnish National Opera, Algarve Chamber Orchestra, Chamber Artists Orchestra, Beiras Philharmonia, Collegium Musicum Basel, Lisbon Metropolitan Orchestra, Camerata Antiqua de Curitiba, Portuguese Symphony Orchestra, Casa da Música Symphony Orchestra, Cologne Chamber Orchestra, and other orchestras.
He performs regularly with outstanding musicians including Konstantin Lifschitz, Ilya Gringolts, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Alina Pogostkina, Razvan Popovici, Maximilian Hornung, Nabil Shehata, Marcelo Nisinman, Dimitri Ashkenazy, Sebastian Manz, Ramon Ortega, Nicholas Daniel, Loïc Schneider and Regula Mühlemann.
Rui is a member of the Camerata Variabile Basel and the Portuguese Chamber Soloists, and has played at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Festival Bohuslav Martinu, SoNoRo Festival, Crusell Festival, Oficina de Música de Curitiba, Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival, Stift International Music Festival, Lucerne and other festivals and worked with personalities such as Christoph Eschenbach, Jiri Belohlavek, Sakari Oramo, Esa-Pekka Salonen and Wynton Marsalis.
In 2015 he had his Debut recital at the Carnegie Hall.
As principal bassoon, he has performed with Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Ensemble Modern Orchestra, Basel Chamber Orchestra, Festival Strings Lucerne and Camerata Bern.
Through Time, Rui’s recording with the English Chamber Orchestra, is a CD with pieces by Vivaldi, Mozart, Elgar, Villa-Lobos and Françaix, and received unanimous international claim. This very special work, with two world premieres, includes Rui’s own arrangement of Edward Elgar’s Romance for Bassoon and String Orchestra (the original being for Bassoon and Symphony Orchestra) and the Jean Françaix ‘Divertissement pour Basson et Quintette ou Orchestre à Cordes’ which until now had been recorded only in the string quintet version.
Rui’s upcoming album, Close Encounters, with pieces from Du Puy, Marsalis, Winkelman, Nisinman, Saint-Saëns and Piazzolla for bassoon and String Quartet/Quintet, includes 4 premiere recordings and will be released on 7 April 2023.
From Baroque to Contemporary
A fascination for Baroque and enthusiasm for Contemporary music have led from the study of early music on period instruments with Marc Vallon in Paris to the contemporary with Pascal Gallois and Pierre Boulez at the Lucerne Festival Academy, giving Rui an unusually broad repertoire. He works with the Ancient Music Capriccio Basel as well as contemporary music ensembles such as Music Factory and Ensemble Modern.
His love for Argentinean Tango and Portuguese Fado styles often informs Rui’s own distinctive arrangements.
Born in Portugal, Rui is dual national (portuguese/swiss) and lives in Basel with his wife Barbara and their two sons. He studied with Hugues Kesteman in Artave and Porto Music Academy, Sergio Azzolini at the Music Academy in Basel (soloist diploma with distinction) and with Marco Postinghel at the Richard Strauss Conservatory in Munich. Rui’s passion for teaching let him to deliver masterclasses in Europe, America, South America and Africa and teach the bassoon and chamber music in different academies and universities for several years. Rui is professor of Bassoon at the Academy in Strasbourg (HEAR – Haute école des arts du Rhin).
He plays a Peter de Koningh Baroque bassoon ‘after J.H. Eichentopf’ and a Heckel 15 ‘639, one of the rare copies from the Azzolini model.