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Interview with Emil Pantelimon, manager of Corul National “Madrigal- Marin Constantin”

Thursday, 2 March 2023 , ora 10.00

Tomorrow on the 28th of February, at Teatrul National "I. L. Caragiale" in Bukarest, Madrigal Choir "Marin Constantin" will held a magnificent performance entitled "Madrigal 60". We'll find out more details about it from Emil Pantelimon, director of the performance and manager of the "Madrigal" Choir, in a dialogue with Ioana Țintea.

Firsty, I would ask you to tell us how did you come up with the course of the anniversary event from a directing point of view?

On the 28th of February we will celebrate the day of the Madrigal Choir- specifically the 60 years since its foundation with a really well scheduled event which brings the history of the Madrigal Choir in the public eye, as well as its present, but most importantly the Choir's future, and coral movement in Romania's future.

In this context, I am really glad and at the same time very proud to announce the launching of the new costumes of the Madrigal Choir, which were thought, designed, sketched and sewed by Iulia Gherghescu- a very well appreciated stage designer; a spectacular decor envisioned and designed by Vladimir Turturică, a castle waiting for the public on the big stage of Teatrul Național din București on Tuesday, from 19:00 p.m.; a repertoire chosen by Anna Ungureanu - main conductor of the Madrigal Choir from the period in which the costumes and decor were also imagined.

Basically, we will almost be 1:1 faithful to the era. We'll practically build a time capsule through which the Madrigal would bring the public in this Rennaissance area, in which the sound and harmony were those which made the Madrigal Choir famous in these 60 years.

Apart from these very important artisticmoments, which would not be longer than 60 minutes, since we turn 60, we will award the "Marin Constantin" Prize, as we have been doing for 6 years, to a personality outside of Madrigal, who supported the cultural life in Romania, but also the Madrigal Choir. And at the end, the surprise that comes before the public is this intergenerational reunion. Former members of the choir, since the establishment of the choir, current members, but most likely future members - children from Cantus Mundi choirs - will bring joy, cheerfulness, inspiration, many moments of emotion and remembrance on the stage of the National Theatre.

We are very glad that the Honorary Director of the Madrigal Choir, master Ion Marin will be joining us for this event and he will even interract with the public, in a special way. At the same time we are happy about the partnership with Televiziunea Română and Radio România, given the fact that it is a live-streamed event. Another great joy is the fact that we are able to pull pictures from the then archive of the Radio-Televiziunii and to organize a digital exhibition in the foyer of the National Theatre, in addition to the costumes exhibitions and... many other surprises we are awaiting you on the spot.

I understand that thourgh the night's guests would be also former members of the Madrigal Choir. Can you reveal some names for us?

48 former members, but we are glad that both Vero Bojescu, the closest collaborator of master Marin Constantin, and Voicu Popescu and Dan Mihai Goia will pass by the rostrum- outstanding personalities that had conducted the Madrigal at some point and for sure, many, many members of the Madrigal from 1963 until now- we are happy to have many of them alive and well. I also want to talk about Maria Stoica here, the former manager of the Madrigal Choir, who was also a member before managing the institution.

So, we are talking about a concert from the series "Madrigal - 60", which the ensemble proposes for 2023. What other events are included in the Choir's agenda in the coming period?

On the 1st of March we will inaugurate at the Parliament of Romania, at the Senate, Sala "Madrigal - Marin Constantin, a beautiful gallery in which we'll held cultural events, and also permanent exhibitions that would bring in the spotlight the history of our 60 years of existence.

We are moving forward to the Easter Musical Tournament and we will pass through 8 citites in which we'll perform the "Passiontide", with the Madrigal Choir, conducted by Anna Ungureanu, Cezar Verlan, Corneliu and Pavel Ulici- as the actors, and the children from the Cantus Mundi Choirsnfrom all over the country would join us again.

We'll be leaving for various trips and we are glad to launch this year in Brussels the "Hymns of the European Union", we are glad to launch in Peru the "Hymns of Latin America" performed by the Madrigal Choir in an exceptional version - filmed and recorded at the Romanian Senate, the partner institution in this diplomatic protocol program.

We'll film videoclips in a unique program - contemporary music in ancient areas, at Sarmizegetusa and Machu Picchu.

This year we will also be presentat the biggest seaside holiday, at the Navy Day, with the extraordinary concert "Ave Maria", together with Marius Manole and the children from Cantus Mundi Choirs.

At the George Enescu Festival we'll bring an impressive repertoire; Madrigal in the 60 years in the Enescu Festival - the first auditions that the choir had, in a novel version, a first part of Misa Brevis and a second part of Misa Criolla by Ramirez. It will be an exceptional moment.

And I obviously can't omit the Christmas concerts and our participation in the national festivals - theaterand film festivals - in which Madrigal is invited... in addition to this year's discographic and editorial appearances and, of course, in addition to the opening in September of the Madrigal Gallery at the Art Safari program (two pavilions will be occupied exclusively by the Madrigal).

And I can also tell you that in June,for example, we will exclusively launch a productfor children, in which the Madrigal performsfor children from 9 months to 1 year, for pregnant mothers and newly born children, in a concert meant for the well-being of the body and soul, a concert in which music succeeds - with a team of doctors from Berlin, from psychiatric clinics - to calm, relax the body, in what better way than the harmony and sound of the Madrigal Choir.

Interview by Ioana Țintea
Translated by Georgiana Morozii,
University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I
Corrected by Silvia Petrescu