lunedì 4 agosto 2014

Interview with Julia Malischnig by Giuseppe Chiaramonte, made in June 2010

GIUSEPPE CHIARAMONTE: Some guitarists start studying guitar pushed by an innate passion, some others thanks to their curiosity, others are encouraged by their parents... how did you start studying guitar?

JULIA MALISCHNIG: I fell in love with guitar when I was 3 years old…
It was on a cold winter day… I was walking with my parents through the snow into the city where my mum wanted to buy me a snow shovel to play in the snow.
Suddenly I saw this little guitar in a shop window. The snow shovel was no longer of any interest, I had fallen in love with this guitar at first sight and wanted to have nothing else than that.
So…since then this special love has been lasting…

G.C.: At what age did you realize that the guitar would become a key part of your life?

J.M.: Very soon…I think I was about 12 when I knew that guitar would always be with me, becoming my profession. Thanks to my wonderful first teacher Barbara Dietrich at the music school Spittal I got to know the world of guitar very soon. When I was eight I already got the chance to participate in masterclasses with Pepe Romero. He definitely was my very early key teacher – a very important person who himself speaks through the love for his guitar. With this amazing feeling I got my first lessons by him, learning how to touch and feel the string and how to be connected with my instrument.
The key part of my musical life is lying in my childhood, my wonderful teacher and the always very natural and caring way of my musical education.

G.C.: Among the others, you studied with two of the most important Italian guitarists, Oscar Ghiglia and Aniello Desiderio. How much those experiences were important for you?

J.M.: Both have been very important, each one in a different way.
When I saw Aniello Desiderio live in concert for the first time, this was a very special and intense musical moment for me. Never before had heard someone play like him…so that gave me a huge portion of motivation and new vision for my further studying time.
With Oscar Ghiglia I studied one year in Basel at the music academy and also at music academy Chigiana in Siena. He opened new sound dimensions for me, made me aware of myself and how to bring out my very own sound of me and my guitar.
G.C.: You have given concerts in different continents. What is the concert hall you have appreciated more? And where did you meet the most hearty public?
I have been playing in many places. Big halls, small rooms, holy places…each place is unique.
I will always feel differently in every place I will be and so me and my music will always sound differently as well.
The Philharmony of Kiev, Ukraine was very special to me. Beautiful hall with very fine acoustics.
The audience really touched me that night. And the next day a new piece came out of my guitar…it’s called “Kiev Meditation” and will be the bonus track on my City of dreams CD1.
About the most warm hearted public it is difficult to say…audiences are very different everywhere…each concert is different and unique and so is its audience…public in South Africa is amazing warm hearted …but you can find them everywhere…if you just let your heart speak through music.

G.C.: Where and when are you going to play next?

J.M.: Main event in August 2010 is La Guitarra esencial and my CD Presentation there. After that will play some more CD presentation concerts with my group in Carinthia and Vienna. Several solo concerts presenting my new music will be followed in September in Granada, Spain, in Oct. at a Guitar Festival in Bulgaria, Nov. at the German Guitar Festival “Saitensprünge” and after that at The Wroclaw Guitar Festival in Polen…so will be touring with my ´City of Dreams` through all different cities.

G.C.: What is your preferred repertoire? Who is your favorite composer?

J.M.: As I have started to write my own music too, my present repertoire now integrates many of my own pieces. Still there are a lot of other compositions which I love to play such as Argentinean tangos or both music from the past and presence.
My favourite composer is Ralph Towner, whom I admire for his high art and honest music.

G.C.: You are also a composer. I think this is not common in today’s interpreters. Please, tell us something about your pieces.

J.M.: My first composition for solo guitar called La Marcha de los Pinguinos occured completely unexpectedly for me and all of a sudden while I was on a concert tour in Argentina.
Each of my compositions has a story behind…my music always arises spontaneously based on some emotional experience or deep moment that has touched me.
In my concerts I am telling the story behind my compositions to the audience, communicating and sharing with and through my music.

G.C.: Few questions about “La guitarra esencial”. You are the initiator and artistic director of this important International Guitar Festival in Millstatt, south of Austria. Why did you choose this location? Why this title?

J.M.: La Guitarra esencial …the art of guitar. The guitar as the essence of music and the importance of guitar within the world of music – that’s all metaphorically included in this name. My aim is to develop and bring the guitar to another level…where it is no longer of importance of any style or form, whether classical, or jazz or flamenco or world music – it’s the art of music what La Guitarra esencial is standing for.
Millstatt is located in my home town area, it’s a beautiful place at a beautiful lake, it is both peaceful and
pristine and just the perfect place for music and art. So I chose “my home” as location of La Guitarra esencial, to offer a very special festival with special artists and outstanding art to the audience and people of my country.
Millstatt is a small village not a city, and the people here really appreciate and support a cultural quality like this.
Sometimes a village can become a city…sometimes a vision can be stronger than anything else.
I have composed one song on that – my hymn to Millstatt called City of Dreams - becoming both title of my musical project and CD

G.C.: The next edition of the festival will take place this summer in Millstatt. What is new this year?

J.M.: La Guitarra esencial Festival is becoming more and more a highly considered international guitar and music festival, where the guitar is always the main instrument within the huge variety of music.
World famous Argentinean bandoneon-virtuoso and composer Dino Saluzzi will open this year’s festival together with his family group, his son José on guitar and brother Felix on saxophone and clarinet – and me joining them as special guest.
The exceptional MGT Trio - 3 guitar heroes of 3 nations- Wolfgang Muthspiel, Slava Grigoryan and Ralph Towner will present their music “From a dream”.
Australians finest guitar duo – Slava and Leonard Grigoryan will perform, as well as Austrian’s classical guitar virtuoso Alexander Swete.
The amazing German guitar & Voice Duo Friend’n Fellow will be there, Austrian’s well known vocal coach Ali Gaggl will offer a vocal workshop to all festival participants, guitar workshops and masterclasses with Wolfgang Muthspiel, Alexander Swete, the Grigoryan Brothers and myself, rhythm and body & music workshops with percussionist Luis Ribeiro and tap dance lady Sabine Hasicka …and so much more.
A really impressive program with great international artists will be waiting for all of you to come to La Guitarra esencial from 4. - 8. August 2010 in Millstatt.

G.C.: Could you reveal something about your new project, the double CD “City of dreams” coming this August, in advance?

J.M.: ´City of Dreams` will be released at La Guitarra esencial Festival on 7.8.2010 in Millstatt.
I guess it’s a rare thing that has ever happened, a double album by a classical guitarist …revealing my own compositions a.o. for guitar, recording solo, duo, with bass and tap dance.
Plus offering a second CD where the guitarist turns into a singer…revealing my own songs, with my own lyrics and some favourite songs.
´City of Dreams` is music somewhere between the lines and can’t be put in any category.
I am speaking my own music, music of many worlds, with my own speech in different languages and colours.
I love sounds and colours, and I love to choose them. I love words and I love to use them. I love my guitar and I love to use my voice.
So I did both. Recording and showing my musical development of these years on 2 CDs.
I can say my music is honest and pure and it is always telling some stories behind.
Of dreams, visions and hopes…
…Every moment can change
Your vision your believe
Every smile you give or get
Will paint a memory in your heart
Becoming melody of your dream…

G.C.: Thank you so much, Julia.

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