Matthias tells about why composers are asked to make new music and not to repeat it and why it is important to listen to music with fun and caring mindset.
A Language, a medium between me and what I want to say. A color in (my) life that I can paint or listen to. An emotion, love.
Do you agree that music is all about fantasy?
I don't know: it could be also all around emotion, love, feelings. It seems handy to need fantasy to make any. I believe anyway that fantasy makes us accept sometimes the craziest things in life. Not all, surely not, and that is also good and important. Fantasy may help sometimes understand things. Do you need fantasy to listen to music? At least you may need a pair of ears and patience to listen!
If you were not a professional musician, would would you have been?
something in mechanical physics or an actor.
The classical music audience is getting old, are you worried about your future?
No! You can make everybody happy! Old people too! Then their families may see it and get themselves interested in classical music. To look into future is not my speciality anyway... Often and I'd say nearly always, mankind was wrong about predicting anything, beginning with the weather forecast. :) optimistic as I am we can be happy, that the audience -is- getting old. At least we have an audience! The younger audience is also getting old..that's also a good news. Next to this I have the believe that you can touch everybody if you are alive,honest, approachable and communicative with and about your work.
What do you envision the role of classical music to be in the 21 century? Do you see that there is a transformation of this role?
It may depend on different things : education and interest, mentality of a country, possibility of getting to a concert and the development of archiving and documenting music. What I hope is that music may invite the listener to take time, breathe, listen, enjoy and having a good moment. This I hope will be its role in all the next centuries.
When I say that classical music is searching for new ways or that the classical music is getting a new face, what would come to your mind?
A mask. Classical music is not searching. People who want to sell tickets are often searching for new ways to sell them. They may try to sell a at least century old programm. It s like going to a museum. I believe we should be more attend not to be too afraid of good new pieces of music and program them together with the older ones. Then the circle of time may go on. The 'new face' would be anyway the music of yesterday. And not like now the new interpretation of the music of long before the industrial revolution. I m pretty sure that your question was also asked earlier and answered too:Mendelssohn incorporated pieces of his time with older ones: In these days Bach was an unknown composer. Mendelssohn made him the known composer we know all. Next to this, for example, we still don't know half of the music of Schubert: his operas. Its all a crazy territory full of paradoxes. We need music to keep calm!:) and we need to make music. Also listening to a classical concert is a vague Idea anyway: is it an orchestral concert, so a performance of an old dinosaur of the past century? Or a concert of an ensemble? maybe time and space will give the answer.
Do you think that the classical musician today needs to be more creative? Whats the role of creativity in the musical process for you?
Can one have more creativity today then Monteverdi, Bach, Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert and so many others? In some ways we do need to stay up to the level. Because otherwise in 100 years, we won't see much music of our Century. We need to continue to draw and write the face of our time and civilization.
My creativity is nourished by my intuition.
Do you think we musicians can do something to attract young generation into the classical music concerts? How will you proceed?
We need to be reaching out. Performing and....always have fun:
Having fun and playing well is an addictive and inviting elixir of love of music for everybody.
Tell us about your creative process. Do you have your favourite piece (written by you) How did you start working on it?
Every composition is for me like a moment in my life, a photograph. Now I assume I 'd pick a piece I ve written next to my children. My favorite piece may very well also be my next composition.
I'm always reluctant looking back and feeding my ears with my own pieces.
How do I start writing? I love to study about the theme and the instrument I will write for, then I digest every minut of my life to make a kind of synthesis of it in sounds. But at the end, I take my pencil and my paper, I sit down somewhere - I love to sit at my piano-and I write. Like writing a letter to a friend.
We, Moving Classics TV, love the combination of classical music with different disciplines: music and painting, music and cinematography, music and digital art, music and poetry. What do you think about these combinations?
Great! I love the Idea of working with cinematography, digital art, theater, poetry, dance, puppetry. I did it already and can't wait do do more!
Can you give some advice for young people who want to discover classical music for themselves?
Listen to Schubert's string quintet. Listen to music with the mindset that that music comes from people who were having lots of fun in their lives, were loving and caring living people with sometimes grrrrreat humor!
Now it is a common practice in the media to talk that the classical music is getting into the consumption business, do you agree? We are speaking about the supply and demand rules and how to sell your “product” in your case your compositions. How do you see it?
a big misunderstanding: as a composer, your compositions may be the worst of the worst business plan. Anyone who makes a business needs to make money with the possibility of being able to repeat his product: a soap manufacturer will create one sort of soap and sell this one same soap millions of times. As a composer, you love repetitions, but you find them boring too, you need variation: that may be already a problem business-wise. Then you can't be a composer and live from just writing one piece and repeat that one piece the rest of your life: you create more. And this is the real problem. You are not created to repeat music but to make new one. That makes it very difficult in the short term of your lifespan to make big money with your compositions... as a composer, you may try to sell an unwritten project with the hope that you'll write it. then you look for unwalked ground. That makes it difficult to look for demand...you look for organisations and performers. When you say 'consumption business', I feel like wanting a cup of music with a milk cloud of drama peppered with not too much invention..:)
Do you have expectations what regards your listeners, your audience?
to listen and to trust me. I am not going to give them a bad time. And when they know me, they know it. Maybe this could be the repeating element of your question before...
What projects are coming up? Do you experiment in your projects?
I am going to compose a cello concerto for the first cellist of the Budapest Festival Orchestra, Peter Szabo. Next to this I will compose a piece for cimbalom and saxophone quartet for the Aurelia Saxophone Quartet. And also a composition for the first flutist of the Budapest Festival Orchestra, Gabi Pivon. And I am planning an'oratorium' based on the poems by Paul Celan. The biggest experiment for me now is to make the pieces go organically well. It may depend also how you define the experiment itself: as I define it as something you try without knowing what it will become, I may see the taking of a commission to compose a new experiment. Not its writing: i always want to know and hear in myself what I do. The hope is for me, that the things I imagined, the form, the length , the coloring, the atmosphere are indeed the same as I wanted. With all the freedom of interpretation to the performers! To let them experiment with hopefully a composition that can have one and 1000 other meanings!