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Interview with composer Dan Dediu, guest of the week at Perpetuum mobile

Thursday, 25 May 2023 , ora 10.11

After deeply reflecting on the phenomenon of the new music in contemporaneity, which has taken a whole new shape rather than the one that it presented itself in, 30 years ago, when "The New Music International Week"festival was born, the organising parties came with three main ideas for the 32th edition: 1.sociotope and the new music scene, 2. the musical avant-garde relations between Romania and Germany, 3. György Ligeti - 100 years from his birth. These are the three ideas for the 2023 edition of the festival called "The New Music International Week". Dan Dediu, the artistic director of the series and the guest of the week at Perpetuum mobile, has offered us more details about what "The New Music International Week"festival will entail.

Yesterday, May 21st, marked the start of the 32th edition of "The New Music International Week" Festival. The end of the months is, as always, devoted to contemporary acoustics. We are talking about three main ideas for this year's edition. What are they?

We will be having 18 concerts this year, which marks 32 years since the festival's first edition. We will also be having a musicology symposium which deals with"The musical relations between Romania and Germany". We have a group of first auditions written by maestros of Romanian compositions and also by young aspiring artists for this composer title.

Needless to say, we have very diverse ensembles. First of all, the Radio ensembles have an honourable place - The Chamber Orchestra, the National Orchestra, the Radio Academic Chorus and the Radio Big Band, which is here for the first time. We have chamber ensembles, the Concerto Orchestra of the National Music University from Bucharest, which had just given a concert yesterday, serving as the festival's opening. Therefore, we are going full speed ahead!

This year as well, the 18 concerts are distributed into 4 main directions, which we already know about: Ulysses, Gulliver, Nirvana and Matrix. Where are this week's concerts going to take place?

Most of them will be taking place inside the halls of the National Music University from Bucharest, and thus, in the heart of Bucharest. We have two concerts at the Athenaeum - one inside the great hall and the other in the chamber music hall. Another concert has already taken place at the Arcug Gabroveni. We also have a partnership with the Odeon Theatre, in the Studio Hall. And, of course, the concerts which will be taking place at Radio Hall.

This week, on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, between 24th and 25th of May, the Radio Chamber Orchestra, the Radio Big Band, the Radio Academic Chorus and the National Radio Orchestra are including in their programs 6 first auditions of works signed by Romanian composers. I would like us to talk about the program of these three concerts. During the third one, the one of the National Radio Orchestra, there will be a work written for the violin, the fanfare and the percussion.

Exactly. It is a violin concert, but with a somehow unusual ensemble, with brass instruments and the percussion. It's about the violin concert called"Instances VI" by Adrian Iorgulescu, which will be interpreted in first audition by Diana Moș. At the same concert we will also be having an organ concert, a Fantasy-Concert for the organ and the orchestra, written this year and presented infirst audition by the composer Dan Buciu, with Eduard Antal on the big organ of the radio. Moreover, we will be having the last work of the maestro Nicolae Brânduș, The Will. The maestro passed away a few months ago and we, as an homage, will be interpreting his work in first audition with Iustinian Zetea as a soloist. And, last but not least, Erik Sandberg - an absolutely fabulous hornist from Denmark, will be presenting in first Romanian audition, the Concert for horn and orchestra called "Winter Journey" by Krzysztof Penderecki.

Moreover, during the Radio Chamber Orchestra concert, we will be having two more first auditions: a work for the orchestra, Floraison, by the academic maestro, Cornel Țăranu, and a fantasy - Passaccona Helix - for the piano and the orchestra with the soloist Horia Maxim, recently written by the young composer Cătălin Crețu.

The Big Band will be also bringing forth a new work by Simona Strungaru, some sort of symphony on the organ, also in the interpretation of Eduard Antal. And I am very curious about it since this combination of organ and the big band is, indeed, a sui generis one, an original one.

I would like us to talk about the musicology symposium as well. It is one of the traditions of this festival. This year, you are telling us about the relations of the musical avant-garde in both Romania and Germany, which is also the symposium's theme. Could the ones that are interested participate online as well, as was the case last year?

Unfortunately, no. The symposium will be taking place at the New Europe Collage, under the coordination of Valentina Sandu-Dediu, and we will be having two more guests from Germany - Dorte Schmidt from Berlin and Michael Heinemann from Dresden, two musicology professors passionate about the links established between the Romanian and German world music. Five renowned musicologists from Romania will also participate, presenting, each from a different perspective, multiple works about these relations. For example, the events that have happened in the 70s are still not researched enough - the time when many Romanian composers would get scholarships for going to the summer school in Darmstadt, where they would be often faced with the epitome of global composition which, in fact, led to it having a direct influence upon the new music style in Romania. This aspect, but not only, will be researched profusely.

We find ourselves on the second day of the festival. Today, there have been three events which are linked to the New Music International Week Festival. At the end, would you like to put forth an invitation to the public to participate in other events of the festival?

We are waiting for you with our doors wide open. The access is free for the concerts that will be taking place at the National Music University from Bucharest. And the others, nonetheless, have their ticket office waiting to be assaulted by those wishing to participate at the Athenaeum, the Odeon Theatre and the Radio Hall.

What should be said is the fact that the festival's schedule can be consulted easily by accessing the Musical Information Centre in Romania - cimro.ro.

Interview by Lucian Haralambie
Translated by Adelina-Maria Mănăilescu,
University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I
Corrected by Silvia Petrescu