Barbara Mayer, BA BA BA MA MA PhD.

  • Mirabellplatz 1
  • 5020 Salzburg

The German pianist, composer and musicologist Barbara Mayer combines artistic practice with her musicological emphases: She revels in researching and performing the works of seldom-performed composers (particularly from those dating from 19th century onwards) and is passionate about interdisciplinary projects, own compositions and improvisation in a variety of styles.


Moreover, her interest in foreign cultures, especially those of the Iberoamerican area, has led her to focus on Latin American Music which also plays an important role both in her musicological and artistic activities.

Barbara Mayer was born in Schwabmünchen, Southern Germany, receiving her first piano lessons at the age of 5. By the age of 14, she made her piano debut in the “Concert for Young Talents of the Region of Augsburg”, performing Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy’s Piano Concerto n. 1. Her performance was broadcast by Augsburg TV.

She went on to pursue her musical studies in composition and piano at the Universities of Music  Mozarteum Salzburg and Anton-Bruckner-Universität Linz, where she studied with renowned Professors such as Adriana Hölszky, Cordelia Höfer-Teutsch and Margit Haider-Dechant. Barbara Mayer attended the Escola Superior de Música in Lisbon, Portugal, with an OEAD scholarship and has since continued her artistic development through numerous masterclasses, taught by highly acclaimed artists such as Anatol Ugorsky, Alexander Jenner, Masaaki Hirasawa, Konstantin Bogino, Filippo Faes and Roger Muraro.

After completing her Master studies with the highest honours, Barbara Mayer received her PhD in Musicology at Mozarteum with an outstanding final grade.

Her PhD thesis on Brazil`s multiethnic influences in the works of the composer Hekel Tavares (1896-1969) was published by the Springer publishing company. Beside her publication activities, she gives presentations at musicological conferences and cooperates with musicological institutions, such as the Instituto Musica Brasilis in Rio de Janeiro.


Throughout her career, a great number of prestigious institutions have recognized Barbara Mayer’s activities with their scholarships:

Barbara Mayer attended the Escola Superior de Música in Lisbon with an OEAD scholarship. She undertook musicological research abroad at the Instituto Moreira Salles in Rio with the support of the Austrian Ministry for Culture and attended the Bayreuth Festival with an International Richard Wagner Foundation scholarship. Her latest composition projects were supported by the Free State of Bavaria (scholarship programme “Young art and new paths”) and the German Music Council (scholarship programme “Neustart Kultur”).


Furthermore, Barbara Mayer has received the following awards to date:


  • First female winner of the Young Artists’ Award for Composition of the City of Augsburg in their 50 years of history: The jury remarked:

Barbara Mayer shows an astounding professionalism in her compositions, and proves to have the necessary confidence to successfully navigate the current state of affairs in composition. She effortlessly combines structural clarity with a wide range of subtle tonalities, creating great atmospheric density as well as intense, sensuous sound experiences. In her work she succeeds in reconciling elements perceived as irreconcilable, and bridges the gaps between styles and genres, bursting with ideas and expressivity. Her eagerness to experiment shows her outstanding talent to integrate non-musical methods and elements. We foresee a sensational artistic career ahead of her.

  • Laureate in the String Quartet Composition Competition launched by the Ligeti Quartet, London
  • First prize winner (Piano) in the International Music Competition Paul Harris, Verbania/Italy (associated with a scholarship for a piano masterclass under the guidance of Prof. Konstantin Bogino in Milan)
  • Multiple first prize winner in the Ibla Grand Prize World Music Competition, Ragusa/New York both in Piano and Composition sections, and
  • Special Distinction for her interpretation of her composition "Rigoletto im Spiegelland" receiving personal congratulations from Maestro Marcello Abbado. This composition was selected for its potential performance in Carnegie Hall during the winners` concert tour.


In 2010, the Augsburg Philharmonic Orchestra commissioned her to compose a piano concerto inspired by themes of Richard Wagner’s “Tristan und Isolde”. Her project culminated with the premiere of her concerto “Tristanesk”, performed by Mayer herself and the Augsburg Philharmonics in 2011.

Barbara Mayer’s compositions are distributed by the Viennese publisher “Universaledition”.

Her numerous concerts, musicological activities and commissioned works further highlight her excellence in her musical career, having composed for the Augsburg Philharmonics, the Summer Academy Prachatice in the Czech Republic, the Furore publishing house in Kassel, the Ligeti Quartet in London, the OENM (Austrian Ensemble for Contemporary Music).

She has performed her own works across various countries, including Austria, Germany, France, Italy, Portugal, Czech Republic, Switzerland and Brazil. Barbara Mayer has performed in numerous festivals, like the Young Generation Festival of ZKM Karlsruhe in Germany, the Piano Festival “Piano City Pordenone” in Italy, the Festival-Estival Annecy in France, and the International Concert Series "Klangfarben der Orgel" in Salzburg. Some performance highlights include prestigious venues, such as the Mozarteum Wiener Saal and the Gasteig in Munich.

Barbara Mayer is represented by the US-American Artist Management “Price Attractions”.