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Interview with violonist and conductor Daniel Rowland

Thursday, 18 May 2023 , ora 10.13

On Wednesday, 17th of May, the Youth Orchestra of the European Union performs in Timisoara, as a part of a series of concerts "Earth 4all", a tour that starts today in Poland and then, after the concert in Romania, arrives in Serbia, North Macedonia, Kosovo and Greece. On Philharmonica's "Banat" stage in Timișoara, the group that consists of young musicians will perform on Wednesday, alongside the violonist and conductor, Daniel Rowland, from whom we will find out some details about the tour, in an interview by Petre Fugaciu.

First of all, what is the idea behind the tour Earth 4 all?

The idea behind this unique project is that the members of the incredible Youth Orchestra of the European Union - an iconic and legendary platform, with the ideal to gather talents from all around Europe - the idea that they are openly talking through music and culture about two things of crucial importance: the first is the democratic world, full of individual liberties, but also of shared responsabilities: the foundation of a healthy society, this is an element; the democratic ideal, which we emphasize through the genius Ricercare by Bach, throughout which 30 musicians will be on stage in unexpected combinations (for example a double bass next to a violin), nobody enforces anything, we all react one to another. Next we have a song written by the grand Harrison Birtwistle, the avangardist british songwriter, named Cortege, a kind of funeral march, in which every instrument has a dramatic solo part, and then comes back to the accompaniment. The last song that deals with the feeling of democracy is Therry Riley's work, written in the 60s, in which, after 50? Nothing is dictated, so the musicians move together like a flock of birds, unpredictably following each other. In Terry Riley's song we will also meet with Romanian musicians. In the second part, we will put emphasis on sustenability: how to save our wonderful planet. Then we are going to play the four seasons - these unsure seasons written by the Italian songwriter Carmen Fizzarotti, based on an algorythm that shows us how the climat changes could look in every place of the world, including Timisoara, if we didn't do anything dramatic. And the music itself is purely fantastical.

How did you come up with the itinerary of this tour?

This tour arrives in six important eastern-european cities - all of them cities with complex and usually painful histories, dramatic, even nowadays. In the case of Timisoara, how we all know, it is the place where the Revolution started in Romania. I remember that I saw this on the news when I was young, it was incredible. Plus, Timisoara is an European Cultural Capital, therefore it is the perfect place to celebrate this project that promotes democracy, shared responsibility and sustenability.

Interview by Petre Fugaciu
Translated by Bogdan-Nicolae Tănăsescu,
University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I
Corrected by Silvia Petrescu