venerdì 15 novembre 2013

Interview with Elena Càsoli by Empedocle70 - third part

You have devoted your talent and your guitars to the contemporary repertoire and composers, what is your relationship with the classical tradition? Do you ever play any music of the nineteenth century or the Renaissance repertoire?

Certainly, I have studied this repertoire and it continues to be owned by myself deeply. I play it in concerts, I have recorded it, I follow the students who study it and I love it very much. I don’t think this is a contradiction, but I share my time and my energies between the classical and the contemporary repertoire, even if the last one because his characteristic of “work in progress” in collaboration with other musicians occupies an important part of my time. I think that it’s important to study a particular repertoire or composer, as much as it’s important for every musician to develop an elastic and flexible way of thinking, that shall permit him, to be able to move, I will not say through different styles – an ability that only few artists may have - but through different authors of the same style, enriching their own interpretative perspective and keeping the highest artistic quality.
You have found LArecords, an independent label dedicated to meetings and special productions between music and literature, would you like to tell us about this project and its achievements?

LArecords is a project founded with Maurizio Pisati, it’s been created to carry out special recording projects dedicated to the encounter between literature and music, projects that could not find space in the catalogues of other labels. LA is the A note, that in the Inno di San Giovanni by Guido D’Arezzo is remembered as "Labii reatum", the lip’s fault. We have designed this fault as "the pleasure of telling." In this way we recorded our first cd Taxi! with music by Maurizio Pisati and text by Roberto Sanesi, poet and translator of Milton, Blake and Shakespeare, whose voice has become part of music, a document that acquires special importance now that he is no longer among us. Shin-on is a meeting between a Japanese painter and four composers,two Japanese and two Italians. " This music was born around his works made of tissue paper and rust, nursery rhymes that echo Japanese teapot sounds, between puffs of flutes and guitars. The Copiafavole was the challenge of transforming into music the sounds and rhythms of machines, photocopiers, telling nine stories very different, making a live performance at the Piccolo Teatro Regio in Turin in 2002. We have now ready the master for a cd dedicated to Villa-Lobos and Brasil, with a brasilian party with short stories, poems, lullaby, the music of Villa-Lobos, and finally even his own voice that tells us that "The heart is the metronome of life"!

You have your own video channel on youtube with different videos with you playing in different situations, sometimes in music-theatre any way quiet different from the usual classic video of the classic guitarist. Why these choices and do you think that just like it’s happening in other musical genres, classical music shall find innovative use for video-multimedia, as well as with the trilogy "quatsi" by Godfrey Reggio for the music of Philip Glass?

As I often say, it’s following the composers, their creations, that I find myself in those situations where several kind of arts meet. I like these situation very much, they make me very curious about, though I not deny the appeal for the "purity" of the classical concert. The real difficulty is to create a real and deep interaction between the different languages used and not just pull over on the same stage musicians and artists from various sources using different media. I believe that fusions among the media are a necessary condition so that in the show shall happen something special for the artists and for the public, but this requires time, effort and a strong inspiration.

In addition to your significant live activity, you are "Gitarre Professorin" at the Hochschule der Künste Bern, How can you mix these two activities? Sometimes I have the impression of a dichotomy between the two "careers": a musician busy with his concert activity shall be a good teacher ...

For me these are two different but interactive expressions of my being a musician. I think that my live activity is a stimulus and not a barrier to the guitarists who work with me in Bern, as well as the energy of my students is for me as nourishment to play better in concert. In Berne I have the Guitar class by I teach also Interpretation of Contemporary Music, in addition to groups of chamber music and special projects in collaboration with the departments of Electronics, Theater, VideoLab. This allows guitarists to meet and work alongside other musicians, actors, composers and learn through this contact to live music not as a reason for isolation, but as a means of communication with other artists and the public. What I am saying may seem obvious to those who do not attend the world of classical guitar, but has a foundation, because in the guitar world, unfortunately, the isolation sometimes has stopped very promising talents who, not nourished by the continuous dialogue with other musicians, have ended up not believing in what they're doing. The first one who warned me about this danger was Ruggero Chiesa, who had repeatedly witnessed with sadness to this strange form of "aging" as he called it, that get the classical guitarist. I try to help everyone to discover his own direction, to understand the reason of this strong destre to be become a musician and how it can be achieved through the choice of repertoire and contacts with the world of music. When a student is clearly manifested in its motivation he show a boost and an extraordinary energy, he acquires the ability to study long hours to give a concrete shape to his own personal aspirations.

Outside contemporary and classical music do you listens to any other music genres?

I Listen to everything from jazz, that I like very much, to many borderline music expressions, like blues, ethnic music, records that arrive at home bought by friends moving around the world, from Japan to Chile. In this period I’m listening *, in particular, Chet Baker and Bill Evans and Sigur Ros. I often listen to Astor Piazzolla to better understand his so particular phrasing, and I play with chamber groups in Bern. I really like the traditional Indian music and Federico Sanesi, a tabla percussionist expert with whom we recently played at the Comunale di Bologna, sometimes he helps me to understand the extraordinary artists of that world. Right now I'm listening to the latest cd from Paul Beier dedicated to Francesco da Milano and Perino Fiorentino, which Paul gave me just this morning while we were talking about our recent concerts.

Thank you Elena

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