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Violinist Alexandru Tomescu - New Zealand debut
Friday, November 13th, 2011, violinist Alexandru Tomescu performed for the first time at the Auckland Town Hall in New Zealand. We interviewed the soloist about the feelings of being on a stage at the other end of the world and the audience's response to the performance.
It was a first for me, and I'd say it is the beginning of the world, rather than the end as it is in New Zealand that January 1st is celebrated first. The concert hall in Auckland felt surprisingly familiar - it is a 19th century building, that could easily fit in the architectural background of any European country - and the very good acoustics of the hall as well as the very warm and responsive audience made me feel very good.
How did the audience receive the integral set of Paganini's "Caprices",as you performed it accompanied by a multimedia presentation?
I think it actually was a premiere for the audience here, I felt how the spectators were gradually drawn into the participating atmosphere of the concert and I really felt them very close. And when I finished Caprice no 24 everybody in the room stood up instantaneously. Their reaction touched me profoundly and people from the audience told me afterwards that a music lover there wished Paganini had written 30 or 40 Caprices, not only 24. As usual, I performed all the Caprices continuously and the audience joined me in this marathon.
After being on an extensive tour with this concert throughout Romania in May this year, now that you're performing it again, have you discovered new qualities of Panini's Caprices? At the end of this experience would you say that Paganini is an angel, or a demon?
It has been a real pleasure to perform this concert again. I can still remember the emptiness I felt at the end of the Stradivarius tour because I still had enough energy to continue with a tight schedule. Of course, during the summer I was involved in other projects and, in the fall, I returned with great curiosity to the Caprices that were to mean so much to me. I could say that they already are at a different stage after the passing of summer. I felt much more relaxed performing them and I could say that I was one step closer to the perfect image of the Caprices I had in my mind. Regarding the question about Paganini, it remains open, now and always, as the public is invited to find their personal answer.
Translated by Mihaela Dănăcică and Elena Daniela Radu
MTTLC, University of Bucharest