sábado, abril 26, 2008

Faces of Circomper: Fernando Fernandez

Kindly translated by Jimmy López

1. How did you get started in music? Why did you choose to become a composer?

I got started in music relatively early when I was eight years old (I think so, I can't remember well) at the Conservatory of Trujillo. My father is a musician and he had already started to teach me the basics of music theory; I started studying clarinet, then the trumpet and then what is called early education followed by a higher degree in composition.

I think one does not chose to become a composer just like one does not decide to dedicate oneself to any other intellectual or cultural activity. There is an impulse, which forces us to develop ourselves in a specific area. The main issue is to determine what conditions/characteristics we have and find the proper way to develop them.

2. Which composers do you admire and/or have influenced you?

All the so-called historical composers because of the access to information with which we can count on. We would have to consider that every creator, known or unknown, has made contributions, which have developed a path so that each subsequent generation might find ways to follow these paths. Ginastera was one of the composers during my first studies in whom I found elements that interested me because of their sound and effect as well as their use of certain musical resources. More than influence or admiration the fact remains that he showed different possibilities to confront sound matter.

3. How would you describe your compositions? What are the characteristics of your compositional language?

As a search to convey certain aesthetic approaches -in truth it is really complicated and difficult to describe the nature of my compositions and language- in any case, in some works I try to use contemporary elements and some elements of our folk music treating them differently, tonally or atonally. I think that extra musical explanations do not make justice -or might under or overestimate- the true nature of music.

4. What is more important for you when composing: emotion or technique?

Emotion and technique or technique and emotion complement each other, never excluding each other from the compositional process.

5. In which piece are you working on right now?

Right now I am revising a cycle of works for solo instruments (strings)-(woodwinds) / guitar duo -I prefer to call it this way due to organizational reasons. And I am also developing a couple of works for voice/piano one with text from Girondo and the other of Coyné.

6. What in your opinion is the role of composers in our society?

Our role is still of very little significance at all different social scales, from the ruling class to the common man; however we should be considered as professionals who contribute and enrich our perceptual capacity to perceive reality in a different way, to open the doors to diverse and innumerable sensorial possibilities and, with it, a possibility for a better quality of life.

7. What do you think is the future of our music?

In times of globalization, if we make our voices heard in a convincing way, our music, with its own characteristics, will find a space to show a great number of possibilities which will integrate our aesthetic and stylistic proposals and could be used as it was done with western music and later on with some -at the time - exotic elements of oriental music. I quote Robert Hughes, "local but not provincial. The anguish of being provincial and peripheral is that you are condemned by the center to not being capable of judging your own work. When you accept the judgment of the center without having your own, you are being peripheral in addition to being provincial. Think locally and thou shall become universal".

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