Soprano Anja Pöche joined the a capella ensemble Calmus as soprano in 2001, marking the group’s transition from an all-male to a mixed ensemble. Anja Pöche (née Lipfert) was born in Leipzig, Germany in 1980. As early as 1986 she started her musical career, including piano lessons starting in 1992, and she became a member of the MDR Kinderchor (children’s choir of the local broadcaster) where she stayed until 1997.
In 2003 she was among the prize winners of the national competition “Jugend Musiziert” (youth makes music) in the section ‘duet: voice and piano.’ Also in 2003 Anja began studying vocal studies at the ‘Hochschule für Musik und Theater Felix Mendelsohn Bartholdy’ in Leipzig as pupil of Adelheid Vogel. After successful completion of her studies she received her diploma in January 2010. Besides her involvement with Calmus, Anja regularly performs as a solo singer in oratorio and cantata concerts throughout Germany, Ireland, Great Britain and Switzerland. A particular emphasis of her repertoire is the music of Johann Sebastian Bach and his contemporaries.
The German counter-tenor and former boy alto, Stefan Kahle, studied at the in Leipzig art, music and German. He was a member of the Thomanerchor Leipzig from August 2002 to July 2011. He performed with them as the alto soloist in numerous concerts in participated as a soloist at home and abroad and can also be heard as a soloist on some CD's of the Rondeau Productions label. With the Thomanerchor Leipzig Jubilly tour to Korea, Japan and England, he excelled as the alto soloist in J.S. Bach’s Matthäus-Passion. He received his musical training in singing lessons with Christina Vogel and Gotthold Schwarz. In addition to his choral engagements, for which he was awarded the Petzold- und dem Ramin-Legat, he has worked with renowned ensembles such as Ensemble Amarcord, Thios Omilos and Ensemble Nobiles, as well as the Capella Icognita from Austria. He also attended courses with the counter-tenor Matthias Rexroth in Stuttgart.
Since October 2008, Stefan Kahle is a founding member(as soprano) of Ensemble De Morales a vocal quartet of four former Thomanerchor Leipzig members, which specialises in the music of the Renaissance. Since September 2011 he studies vocal performance of early music with Gerd Türk at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis and starts his new adventure as the counter-tenor of Calmus in September 2018.
The tenor Tobias Pöche has been the tenor of the Calmus Ensemble since September 2006. Born in Annaberg-Buchholz in 1978, he had his first singing lessons at the age of 7. After having been a member of the Kreuzchor Dresden he studied singing with Kammersänger Rudolf Riemer at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater “Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy” Leipzig.
Tobias is a former member of the Kreuzchor Dresden, and also sang freelance for the MDR Radiochoir Leipzig, the NDR Radiochoir Hamburg, the RIAS-Chamberchoir Berlin, and was a member of the Dutch ensemble “Ensemble Lyrique” and the Händel Festival Choir Halle. In those various ensembles, he has worked with conductors including Michele Mariotti, Sir Simon Rattle, Martin Haselböck, Hans-Christoph Rademann, René Jacobs, Peter Dijkstra, Daniel Reuss, Lothar Zagrosek, Simone Young, Riccardo Chailly and Kryzstof Penderecki.
In addition he has worked as soloist in various opera- and operetta productions at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Leipzig, the Eduard-von-Winterstein Theatre Annaberg and the Anhaltische Theater Dessau. As a soloist and as an ensemble singer, his diverse field of activity has taken Tobias Pöche to all parts of Germany, throughout Europe, Asia and to North and South America.
Ludwig Böhme loves vocal music – as a singer, a conductor, a lecturer or an arranger, and he is a founding member of Calmus. Born in 1979, he was a member of the St Thomas’ Boys Choir in Leipzig. He studied choral conducting with Georg Christoph Biller at the Academy for Music and Theatre “Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy”, Leipzig. Until 2002 he worked as the assistant of the Director of Music of St Thomas’.
When he is not busy with Calmus, he works as the conductor of the Leipzig chamber choir “Josquin des Préz,” which focuses primarily on the music of the Renaissance but whose repertoire does also include later periods. Though basically an a cappella ensemble, there is regular cooperation with baroque orchestras – in concerts, radio- and CD productions. In 2010 the chamber choir “Josquin des Préz” won the second price of the German Choir Competition.
From 2004 Ludwig Böhme has been instigating, as its artistic director, the concert series “Josquin – the Project,” the first complete performance of the latter’s entire oeuvre in St Thomas Church, Leipzig.
Ludwig Böhme leads workshops for vocal ensembles and choirs and is Lecturer for Conducting at the Protestant Academy for Church Music in Halle/Saale. He has also achieved success as an arranger and a composer (Contemporary A cappella Recording Award 2004).
Born in 1988, Manuel Helmeke started his musical career as a young boy at the local children's choir of his congregation. In addition to this he took lessons at the local music school in piano, organ and singing.
In 2008 the young bassist was prize winner of the national music competition “Jugend Musiziert” for young adults. This success encouraged Manuel to start studying singing. He studied with Prof. Berthold Schmid and KS Prof. Roland Schubert at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater “Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy” in Leipzig and graduaded in 2014 with a diploma both in singing as well as in music education.
Meanwhile he has had various engagements as a soloist, where he performed with famous ensembles such as the Thomanerchor Leipzig, MDR radio choir as well as Gewandhausorchester Leipzig. In addition to this he took part in CD productions with the Leipziger Gewandhaus as well as in radio broadcastings with Deutschlandradio Kultur and the MDR.
Manuel is also passionate about conducting his initiated choir projects. From 2012 - 2014 he discovered his preference for ensemble music as part of the award-winning Ensemble Thios Omilos. At the beginning of 2015 he joined Calmus as the bass singer.