This week we had the pleasure of interviewing the charming cellist, 'made in France, assembled in the USA' Marianne Dumas!
We all know HELLO STAGE’s favorite color! What’s yours?
Orange ;) (but I am not an orange maniac, my appartment is not filled with orange things:) )
What was the best advice a teacher ever gave you?
I will share 2 if it's ok :) The first and the last one. When I got into Bordeaux conservatoire I was worried because of my age (I decided very late to become a cellist), Didier Apparailly told me "if this was a horse race I would bid my money on you, don't ask yourself the wrong question, just practice." And the last one was from Anne Williams after she received my email telling her about my Bach project this week : "Enjoy every minute, and don't notice any problems!".
It started with a "don't worry just practice" and finished with a "enjoy, no more problems"! Both are about the same thing, to put your attention into what really matters in the moment.
How has your practice changed with time?
For me there was a big change in 2002. I changed my posture because of a tendinitis problem. Thanks to Philippe Chamagne and Isabelle Campion (Clinique du musicien, Paris), not only I have never experienced any pain since that, but I found my sound and could build a stronger technique based on a healthy posture.
What do you think is the most important trait of a successful artist in today’s modern world?
Talent is not enough. See yourself as a product to sell. A marmelade, for example. No matter how good and tasty it is, you have to make a campain and get people to hear about it and like it until someone is going to want to invest money in your delicious jam. So, I would say invest money and time in yourself, and be or become the original version of yourself, not a fake copy of a successul one. There is only one Nutella ;) And it is a great journey!
How much time do you spend every day on Facebook, Twitter, and which other ways do you use to promote yourself?
I stop by many times per day but from 1 to 5 min (specially Twitter). I use twitter for my Bach project (@mdcello) and have just created a facebook for my teaching method (Cello Practice Helper ). I have an Instagram account but it's more about cooking than music lately! Then, my personal web and my HELLO STAGE page. I have a Soundcloud for private use for now, to be able to share through private links my work on Bach with some of my friends and special people from the music industry ;)
Marianne, you recently got into calligraphy, tell us more...
Since I am spending my days studying the manuscripts copies of the Suites, I became curious and wanted to understand how to write notes, slurs, rhythms, specially like AM Bach. It is a nice feeling of getting closer to the authors of the manuscript you are studying. When you spend so much time with it, you feel like you get to know the author. AM Bach's manuscript is very different from the other ones, it fascinates me. I can spend countless hours with it. Specially since my "D-scovery" (see my HELLO STAGE page).
How is your Bach CD coming along?
It is going faster than what I expected. Last week I got wonderful news. The "Fond instrumental Français" is going to lend me two beautiful baroque celli (a cello and a piccolo cello) from december. I will be able to record the suites with great old baroque instruments, and I am extremely thankful for that!
This Bach recording project fulfills me more every day. The two first months after my discovery were quite intense... I was practising cello between 6 and 10 hours and the rest of the day studying the manuscripts. Many times until 3am...it was an obsession. Slowly, I found a good balance. I now have a healthy practice routine. That's better!
Why Bach :)?
Bach !!! The magic word, his magic world. A wonderful journey.
After a big change in my life 4 years ago, I started to "explore" the Suites. Playing Bach was like facing the limitations of my own freedom and my own peace. At first it was very hard for me, but it became a wonderful exercise of introspection, freeing my sound, my movement and my mind. The freedom I found in myself and in my cello playing fills me of joy thanks to Bach, that's why I say that Bach is my cello Buddha, he has taught me more than just playing cello.
What are you thankful for in your musical life?
Having found Hello Stage and the great advice on career management of course :) - and to live in city where art is in the air, Berlin.
Marianne has recently launched her special teaching project, join the facebook page for information and motivation, The Cello Practice Helper, in which she offers online tips live whilst you are practicing! You can also get loads of useful tips and inspiration on practicing and learn about the benefits of proper posture.
You can of course also keep up with the wonderful world of Marianne Dumas and Bach on her HELLO STAGE page!