TIME is the overriding motto for the 2016 DRESDEN FESTIVAL. Music can play with time in so many interesting ways, music can even suspend time creating frozen moments, moments of stasis where time ceases to exist – and in the words of festival director Jan Vogler “A good concert always provides us with a magical discourse between the past and the future.” In this exclusive audio podcast Vogler talks to Edward Seckerson about the mysteries of time and motion as it relates to the 2016 festival beginning as it does with an extraordinary all-night vigil of music set in motion by the work of British minimalist pioneer Michael Nyman known to the world for his extraordinary scores for Peter Greenaways’ ground-breaking films like The Draughtsman’s Contract. Vogler talks about the cleansing force of minimalism and the changes that it wrought on an ever more complicated musical landscape. He talks, too, about the international character of the Dresden Festival and how keen he always is to create a sense of “music without borders”.
And the question of borders, with regard to the ever growing refugee crisis engulfing the world, is addressed, too. The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Jerusalem Quartet will remind us how composers like Mahler and Shostakovich deployed Jewish folk music as a source of irony, of pathos born from bathos, and how music became the weapon of choice in the arena of peaceful protest.
Vogler himself plays the Schumann Cello Concerto – a work he loves – twice at this year’s festival and in doing so he explains how important it is that each individual performance or event is unique to that time only. Time may be fleeting but the memories linger on.
image © Jim Rakete