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Pianist Mirabela Dina on the stage of the philharmonic in Pitești

Monday, 28 March 2011 , ora 14.04

Thursday, a usual day of the week. The radio never sleeps; it hasn’t even dawned yet; it’s 6 in the morning and there’s about an hour left till a quarter past 7 when I start the morning session at Radio Romania Music. I haven’t but to insert the musical news in my play-list and, surprise, surprise! I come upon an extremely interesting agenda on March 17th 2011: the Radio is celebrating the Guitarre Festival, then Liviu Prunaru, the famous Romanian violinist and concert master of Concertgebouw, will play at the Athenaeum; the National Opera has even got two manifestations in the program… I scoop the agenda and the concerts around the country and I really don’t know which to promote first. For pianists, we haven’t got but great names: Dana Borșan in Bacău, Mirabela Dina in Pitești, Horia Maxim will perform a concert in Sibiu...

Mirabela Dina, laureate of Martha Argerich contest

Mirabela in Șostakovici... I linger a bit in front of this poster of the philharmonic in Pitești. Mirabela seldom comes ‘home’. Established in Germany, in Cologne, where she graduated Hochschule für Musik, the pianist of Craiova, destined since early childhood to be on the stages around the country and at international Contests, launched her international career in a spectacular way in 1999, simultaneously with the success of Marta Argerich contest. With this glorious she walks on great world stages, taking part in international festivals, whereas as a teacher, Mirabela Dina holds artistry courses in Buenos Aires, La Plata (Argentina), București, Craiova and has often been invited to become member of the Contest ‘Jugend musiziert’ in Germany. Since 2007, she has been a teacher at Hochschule für Musik in Cologne. I can’t miss such a presence in Romania, even if Pitesti is more than 100 km away, even if tomorrow morning I will start all over again with the morning broadcast… umm… and then I have this real opportunity of finally listening to this new philharmonic in Pitesti, conducted by the stick of a man about whom I have hold real appreciation regarding the preparation and the musicality.

Tiberiu Oprea, a young stick gifted with musicality and bon-sense

Tiberiu Oprea is the disciple of Ludovic Bac, the master from whom he seems to have not only inherited the passion and the modesty, the respect when you approach music, but also that musical and human bon-sense by which Bac subtly succeeded in captivating both the orchestra and the audience. Five minutes before seven p.m., the time the concert starts, I was still driving around on a soaking weather, downtown in Pitesti, spinning at the kind suggestions of various pedestrians around the ‘hidden’ Cultural House (I was in Pitesti, what was I to expect…?). Haven’t I treaded unknown ground? I eventually climb the stairs before Tibi lifts his stick and I hurriedly sit down in the first row. The soloist of the evening keeps us waiting, so I have plenty of time to cheer myself up. I’m thinking of the meeting that awaits me. Of the one who brought me here… Mirabela Dina.

Art, a flight in the highest!

Ladies’ art, like the two most distinguished teachers, Ana Pitiș și Ioana Minei, are called, the ones that guided the first steps in the pianist’s evolution. The teachers whom, after years of research in piano pedagogy, were revealed…a secret. That miraculous ‘mechanism’ by which a key, once pressed, not only resonates a string, but also makes the entire Universe vibrate. A secret that ladies’ students like Mirabela Dina, Dan Atanasiu, Cristian Petrescu or Matei Varga share with the entire world today. I was going to discover the new Mirabela that evening in Pitesti in an opus daring to a ‘young’ audience, the dramatic and sarcastic concert no. 1 in C major by Șostakovici. The strings and the trumpet, in a close connection with the soloist piano, poignant counterparts, but also plunging into sublime melancholic parts, up even to expressive desolation. A score in which the pianist demonstrated a special affinity with the sophisticated style of the twentieth century’s Russian composer, and Tiberiu Oprea’s stick felt it and supported it with every gesture in agogic or expression. We may have entirely interpreted the wide spectrum of nuances in which Șostakovici conducts the string assembly, if the Orchestra of the Philharmonic in Pitesti had had a hall with proper acoustics.

In absence of, the audience was surprised by one single evidence: that of this concert’s frequent dissonant tones, in the ‘classic’ music lover’s perception.

In the musicians’ intimacy… when the stick becomes bow and the soloist plays the role of accompanist

If the applauses at the end of the concert weren’t satisfying for the artists’ remarkable collaboration and performance, after the break, the musical intimacy of the conductor with his distinguished guest satisfied everyone. Tiberiu exchanged the stick with the violin and Mirabela the role of soloist with that of accompanist. Gluck, ballet moment. Simple and melodious. A violin full of sensitivity. A mute piano, absolutely dazzling. We now find out the secret of the communication I for once noticed during the first part: the two artists have been making music together since high-school, and we took part in this joyful re-encounter full of emotions and sense.

...ovations for a philharmonic which the people of Pitesti only dreamt of such a long time…

The evening of March 17th ended luminously with Tchaikovsky’s visit to Rome, the romantic, solar music, for the orchestra, of the Italian Caprice op. 54. Eventually… fulminating applauses. Ovations. The people from Pitesti simply love the Philharmonic and the conductor.

I’m tearing along on the highway from Pitesti to Bucharest at midnight. Of this wonderful evening there is only one image that haunts me. A four-year-old little boy. So small that standing with his face to the audience, he barely reached the orchestra’s stage with his head. He was playing the conductor, gesticulating passionately towards the audience, while Tiberiu Oprea was conducting. A simple game for him for now, at some point irritating perhaps for us in the audience in the hall. But this little man could be tomorrow’s great master of the conducting stick. And that’s because there is a Philharmonic in Pitesti, where he grew up…

Ana Voinescu
Translated by Mirona Palas and Laura Bosnea
MTTLC student, University of Bucharest