THE ORANGE TWIST
Introducing a trio with a twist of their very own - New Piano Trio, founded by German violinist and composer Florian Willeitner (pictured with his girlfriend), Austrian-Rumanian pianist Maria Radutu and Swiss-based cellist Ivan Turkalj in 2013.
We all know HELLO STAGE’s favorite color! What’s yours?
M: I think each one can be amazing, it depends on the nuance, that’s why I love strong colors like royal blue, fuchsia, emerald green and Hello Stage orange :-)
F: I actually do not have a favourite color! I like a lot all the colors I can find in the nature. I don't like colors of big towns.
I: That would be blue. Summer-sky-blue.
What was the best advice a teacher ever gave you?
M: When I was a lot younger and completely crazy about Rachmaninoff's Second Concerto. I told my teacher and said that I know I don’t have the skills to play it yet. I didn’t expect an answer, but he immediately said : „ if you like it that much, just do it“. It turned out to be one of the pieces which brought me the most success.
Some years and similar experiences later (concerning piano playing or not) I understood that if you stop asking yourself if you are good enough for your aim and just keep doing what you love to do, you will find the answers on the way.
F: If you really want to learn something, your best teacher is yourself.
I: "Now, Ivan, forget everything you learned and practiced!"
How has your practice changed with time?
M: The biggest change was after graduating university. During studies with my teachers I always felt free to decide on the interpretation and to have my own ideas. Still, there is a big difference between feeling supported in becoming independent and being responsible for every detail. The working process became a lot more concious and personal because I can go my own way. Nobody cares about how much time I want to give myself to study a new recital or how I build my programs. This freedom gives me the possibility to express myself as an artist.
F: It has become quicker and more efficient, because, as you grow older, you have less and less time, or lets say: more and more things that you want to do, but the 24-hour day stays the same. The whole process of studying a piece is more and more about the music, I can say this for myself as well as for the New Piano Trio: We are working on groove, time, phrasing etc., technical stuff stays in the background (but is of course still there).
I: There is less and less time for actually doing it with the instrument. Most of the pieces I learn by practicing them on the road, provided that it’s not a night train. Thats when I get my sleep…
What do you think is the most important trait of a successful artist in today’s modern world?
F: Getting back the creative component into the music. Not to be only a reproducer, but develop a real artistic personality. To get the music (also the so called "E-Musik") back to the common people's hearts. And to absorb as much inputs from as many different styles of music you get possibly get.
I: Be versatile (wandlungsfähig)! Play not only the music you learned, but also the music you listen to in your private time. There is nothing more rewarding than to present your own music and being the only one who plays it. It’s fun! :)
How much time do you spend every day on Facebook, twitter, and which other ways do you use to promote yourself?
M: It is still difficult for me to promote myself in social media because as much as I love being on scene, playing music and meanwhile even talking about it, I don’t like to talk about myself in public. Being part of a community like Hello Stage makes it easier.
F: 15-20min on Facebook, I have my personal website that I use mainly for promotion things.
I: Most of the time I spend with my best friend, the Mail-Program to answer requests or questions. With Facebook and Twitter I spend less time, maybe 15-30 min a day, sometimes more of course. Also I take care of my website.
You recently had your first concert as The New Piano Trio, in collaboration with HELLO STAGE and Wine & Co.Vienna. How did it go?
M: We spent so much time together becoming an ensemble, had a lot of rehearsal sessions in every of our three home towns, learned to use our different musical backgrounds and to grow together within Florian’s music…it was a great moment for us to be able to transport this to the public. After the first piece, Irish wedding in Bucharest we already felt the people on “our side” and that is one of the greatest feelings for musicians.
F: It was an amazing first concert, and for me, it was a very special one for the following reason: as a composer, my concept for the New Piano Trio is to write music that combines the "classical" way of developing a piece, concerning form, motiv work etc. with the freedom and primal musicality of jazz, folk and improvised music. For example to write a four-part fuga ( Fuga in Odd ), using the structure, form and contrapuntal tools that have been used for three centuries now, but combine them with the odd measures and incredibly complex but groovy rhythmic components of the east european folk music.
To sum it up, music that is most demanding in a "classical" meaning and still touches people's hearts.
As the people were really enthusiastic after the concert, it looks like if this idea is working, which makes me incredibly happy.
I: It was wonderful. Thank you very much for the support and being there to listen to us! We had a lot of fun and it was nice to finally see the real (very nice) faces from HELLO STAGE.
The feedback from the audience was very enthusiastic. They loved the music and the energy which it transports. It's fantastic to see that the music works at it was intended.That’s a big success! Thank you Florian for writing it!! I especially love the Fuga. Who would have thought that people in the 21st century will cheer boisterously after hearing a Fuga!!! Also there was a wine tasting before the concert. Maybe that helps as well. :)
You are currently performing an exclusively works written by Florian for the New Piano Trio. Any plans to perform contemporary music from other composers in the future?
M: As already mentioned, our plan is to develop a solid and individual sound first. We have a lot of ideas concerning the future of New Piano Trio and one of my favorites is to sustain and combine our music with visual arts.
F: Our concept for the moment is to develop an unique trio sound, which means that for now I am composing the programs for the trio. Once the trio has a clear profile and is established in the musical world, we have a plan to use the trio also as a platform for composers who share this idea of a contemporary music with us, and ask them to write music for the trio.
I: For now we will present our first programm with Florian's music and there are already ideas for a second program. But for now the plan is to establish our sound and present this new sound to the world. If someone writes a piece we like and think it will fit into our concept and helps develop our sound, then we are open to it.
You all come from diverse backgrounds - if each of you were a spice that brings a unique flavour into the New PIano Trio, which spice would you be :)?
M: Cardamom, you always know it’s there, but it is also able to merge different tastes into one food.
F: I think that it is something that is there without being recognized, like the perfect amount of salt in a soup. Salt? Or, to be a little more extraordinary, a clove... (Nelke)?
I: In Croatia we use a lot of pepper in our soup. And I love soup. So… black pepper!
Follow and keep up with the New Piano Trio on HELLO STAGE.
Author: Nina (c) HELLO STAGE