ROYA Quartet has been fused into an ensemble by their love for the classical saxophone and chamber music-making, accompanied by their wish to present the very best of classical saxophone repertoire to a wider audience, and to do so in the form of a one- of-a-kind and unique ensemble, such as a female saxophone quartet. Their story began in September 2013, after years of various musical projects in which they collaborated.
The repertoire of the quartet, in addition to the standard and contemporary program, is constantly bettering. Through a variety of projects, ROYA is searching for different music genres and forms of expression. This became their annual Ladies Night event, where in June 2016, they performed tango in a unique style, with the musicians of the Quatro por Tango ensemble. The excellent arrangements for bandoneon, piano, violin, double bass and the saxophone quartet were arranged by the Argentinian composer Fernando Muslera. The compositions of the legendary Astor Piazzolla were revived in a new guise. In June 2017 they presented Village Ladies, a unique project which was inspired by traditional music and its influence on the art of music in collaboration with composers from Croatia, Poland and Slovenia and the singer and composer Zvezdana Novaković.
In addition to their solo projects, the quartet’s work is based on the promotion of Slovenian, Croatian and Polish composers. Up until now, they have performed the works of the Croatian composers Margareta Ferek-Petrić, Berislav Šipuš and Zvjezdan Ružić, Slovenian composer Nina Šenk and Polish composers Dariusz Przybylski, Anna Maria Huszcza and Oliwia Wronikowska.
ROYA contributed recordings for the following albums: Nina Šenk, Art, Anna Maria Huszcza, wydziwiAnka and Zvezdana Novaković, Slovena Voices.
The members are aware of the importance of the visual identity and visibility, which is why they started to cooperate with artists in the fields of fashion design (fashion designer Mirna Posavčević, HR), graphic design (graphic artist Martyna Rzepecka, PL) and multimedia identity (photographer Martin Vogrič Dežman, SLO). They have performed solo concerts in Croatia (Varaždin, Pula, PODIUM Festival in Fažana / Brijuni), Poland (Summer Saxophone Workshops in Szczecinek), France (World Saxophone Congress SaxOpen 2015 in Strasbourg), Serbia (Belgrade SAXperience 2017) and Slovenia (Festival Emona Ljubljana, the International Saxophone meeting in Nova Gorica, Dravograd, Slovenj Gradec ...)
What is special about the quartet is their female identity, charisma, extraordinary talent and their rainbow of nationalities. The diversity of traditions, experiences, cultural heritage and values further enriches the already distinct multicultural identity of the ensemble. With the rich temperament and individual charisma of each of their members, ROYA has been conquering the hearts of the wider audience.
They are graduates and winners of international and domestic competitions. Their mentors include: prof. Matjaž Drevenšek (Academy of Music Ljubljana), Jean-Denis Michat (CNR Lyon), Lars Mlekusch (Konservatorium Wien ̶ Privatuniversitaet) and Oto Vrhovnik (Universitaet fuer Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien). As successful teacher, they are employed at the Conservatory of Music and Ballet Ljubljana, Music school Franc Šturm and Vič-Rudnik Ljubljana and at the Varaždin Music School. They have led summer seminars and saxophone workshops and are active members of the following ensembles: Slovenian Saxophone Orchestra SOS, Partyka- Rzepecka, TranSAX project, JazzIstra Orchestra.
"... musicians, all of whom apparently have very strong personalities, became one in their mutual performance. With the art of bringing differences together and with a total devotion to their mutual chemistry, they created a group that is special enough and commenced a brave adventure of presenting difficult music pieces that are otherwise never heard on Slovenian concert stages."
Tatjana Gregorič, Primorske novice
"... with an abundance of temperament, but also with soft emergence into the lyrical moments of music pieces, the ensemble delivered extremely convincing and charming interpretations that called for enthusiastic applauses, time and time again."
Tomaž Gržeta, Glasna
"...for with a particular persistence and energy, the saxophone ladies in their vigorous musical narratives preserve what is special in the ancient, vital self of the female world."
Tatjana Gregorič, Primorske novice