The wind quintet Slowind was established 22 years ago, and has become the most active new music ensemble in Slovenia. As well as performing practically all of the works of the standard wind quintet repertoire, the members of Slowind have developed a reputation as uncompromising performers of contemporary music, from the classics of the avant-garde to works by the youngest composers, many of whom are not yet established but are very promising composers of our time. By commissioning new works, Slowind constantly encourages young Slovenian composers and is glad to respond to invitations to perform new compositions on many European stages.
At the same time, Slowind has for many years collaborated closely with established international composers such as Vinko Globokar, Robert Aitken, Heinz Holliger, Jürg Wyttenbach, Toshio Hosokawa, Uroš Rojko, Martin Smolka, Volker Staub, Ivo Nilsson, Gérard Buquet, Niels Rosing Schow and others, who dedicate new works to the ensemble exclusively for their own projects. Slowind is a regular guest at some of the most important contemporary music venues: Ars Musica Brussels, the Bern Biennale, Klangspuren Innsbruck, the New
On the domestic stage, the ensemble has in recent years strengthened its activities in the area of Slovenian music with the spring concert cycle entitled Slowind Spring, while the autumn is dedicated to the Slowind Festival.
In 2015, Slowind have presented its 18th consecutive festival. Whereas, in its initial period, the cycle of concerts was enriched primarily by contributions from celebrated performers who appeared with the ensemble – Heinz Holliger, Robert Aitken, Alexander Lonquich, Arvid Engegård, Aleksandar Madžar, Mate Bekavac, Steven Davislim, Christiane Iven, Matthias Pintscher, Matthias Würsch, Naoko Yoshino, Mayumi Miyata and others – through the years, the festival has developed into a genuine movement. In the promotion of international contemporary chamber music repertoire and the complete presentation of some of the greatest composers of the 20th century who are less known in Slovenia (Edgard Varèse, Elliott Carter, Vinko Globokar, Tōru Takemitsu), Slowind has been joined by numerous foreign contemporary music ensembles, members of Slovenian symphony orchestras, and established chamber ensembles and choirs.
The festival programme is regularly recorded and broadcast by Radio Slovenia, and the concert recordings are also played by foreign radio stations, including BBC 3, Dutch Radio and others.
For its activities to date, Slowind has received the Župančič Prize (1999), the Prešeren Fund Prize (2003) and the Betetto Prize (2013).