Founded in 1980, the Ensemble Contrechamps aims to perform the 20th and 21st century repertory and to support the current creation. It is responsible for a season in Geneva including conducted concerts, concerts of chamber music, activities intended for all public, children, pupils, adults, passionate people as well as neophytes. Its formation can be extended to about 25 musicians according to the performed works. The Ensemble Contrechamps recorded more than about twenty CDs. Brice Pauset is the Artistic Director of Ensemble Contrechamps since January 2013.
The Ensemble Contrechamps collaborates among others with the following composers: George Benjamin, Pierre Boulez, Unsuk Chin, Hugues Dufourt, Beat Furrer, Brian Ferneyhough, Stefano Gervasoni, Jonathan Harvey, Heinz Holliger, Michael Jarrell, György Kurtág, Helmut Lachenmann, Tristan Murail, Brice Pauset, Matthias Pintscher and Rebecca Saunders; with conductors such as Stefan Asbury, Jean Deroyer, Jurjen Hempel, Jürg Henneberger, Peter Hirsch, Clement Power, Pascal Rophé and Peter Rundel, and with many international soloists such as Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Teodoro Anzellotti, Luisa Castellani, Hedwig Fassbender, Isabelle Faust, Rosemary Hardy, Nicolas Hodges, Salome Kammer, Robert Koller, Donatienne Michel-Dansac, Christoph Prégardien, Yeree Suh and Kai Wessel.
The ensemble is a regular guest at international festivals such as Musica (Strasbourg), Festival d’Automne (Paris), Bludenzer Tage zeitgemäßer Musik, Voix nouvelles (Royaumont), Ars Musica (Bruxelles), musicadhoy (Madrid), Wittener Tage für neue Kammermusik, Salzburg Festival, Venice Biennale, Wien Modern, DeSingel (Anvers), Berlin Festival MärzMusik, Tage für Neue Musik (Zürich) and Lucerne Festival. In Geneva it collaborates regularly with the Centre d’informatique et d’électroacoustique de la Haute École de Musique de Genève, the Eklekto Percussion Center, the Museum of Art and History, the Conservatoire populaire de musique, danse et théâtre, the Théâtre du Galpon and the Théâtre Am Stram Gram. The Ensemble Contrechamps is supported by the City and the State of Geneva.