Minsk–London–Paris...

Rostislav Krimer gathers stars to International festival of Yuri Bashmet in Minsk, Moscow, Berlin and Bonn
Rostislav Krimer gathers stars to International festival of Yuri Bashmet in Minsk, Moscow, Berlin and Bonn.
On October 7 in Minsk the International festival of Yuri Bashmet will gather amateurs of academic music for the third time. Its ceremonial opening will take place on the stage of Belarusian State Philharmonic Hall. A cello of the people’s artist of USSR Natalya Gutman and a violin of the people’s artist of USSR Viktor Tretyakov will sound accompanied by the State Academic symphony orchestra of the Republic of Belarus. Maestro Bashmet will take his place at a conductor’s stand. Our talk with an art-director and festival’s director, a young famous pianist in Europe and our fellow countryman Rostislav Krimer is about surprises of the future musical festival
— Rostislav, how are you going to gladden viewers this time?
— For example, with a concert “Bravo, classics!”, which will again unite completely different music styles. Last year there were classics and jazz, now Yuri Bashmet and a chamber ensemble “Moscow’s soloists” will perform with a popular Moscow band “Bravo”.
— Is mixing music styles popular today?
— We don’t pursue fashion. Our objective is to make classics popular. Today the majority of people, especially young people, are oriented at different music, and I am sure that nobody has to be dragged to an academic concert. It is necessary to attract and direct people there. Styles’ mixing is a compromise, allowing to bring people to a philharmonic hall, and to familiarize them with qualitative music, both with modern popular music and with time-proved classics. I am sure: there is no bad music — it can be poorly performed. In support of this fact there are cases, when people, which were not interested in classics, after visiting good concerts were carried away by it and started collecting discs of classical music. It engages, it doesn’t leave us partial, because it speaks with our soul and heart. Our task is to carry away the viewer with classics and I hope that after a joint concert of “Bravo” band and “Moscow’s soloists” the number of its amateurs will increase.
— They speak that a program of this festival will be refilled by traditional folklore music?
— Yes, on the eve of the festival we plan to organize a demonstration on Nezavisimosti Avenue of musicians playing old folk musical instruments — Russian and Belarusian. In principle, moving towards each other, they will meet in Gorky park, where there will be a special prepared program with a folklore concert, traditional folk entertainment and pancakes… The idea of such action was born on “Slaviansky bazaar in Vitebsk”. Accidentally I visited a festival “City of masters” and found myself at an exhibition of folk musical instruments: pipes, hand-rattles, reeds, trumpets, whistles… I saw a Belarusian pipe for the first time. This is an amazing instrument, a next-of-kin of world famous Scottish bagpipes, but, unfortunately, not so famous and popular on its Motherland. Until acquaintance with showpieces of this exhibition I didn’t suppose that a problem of disappearing musical traditions, becoming obscure, is so topical today. This is why the idea occurred to pay attention on old folk instruments during the festival. Apart from this, this is very beautiful and solemn, when, for example, many bagpipes sound simultaneously. I think, that the demonstration of voices of different traditional musical instruments will be interesting for the viewers.
— I heard that you organized something of a kind in Vitebsk.
— This was a sheer impromptu. At the exhibition I offered to masters-musicians not to stand near the tables with instruments, and to organize a parade, to take them to people and to attract attention as saltimbancos. My offer was supported and we came to the “City of masters” — one tootling, the other whistling, playing harmonica, spoons, we sang couplets altogether… Besides, it was great success, which, I hope, will repeat in Minsk.
— Rostislav, I understand that you don’t want to reveal all interesting things of a future festival, but I can’t but ask you about a concert “Tenor of the ХХIth century”.
— This musical project will become a conclusive accord of the festival and it will gather on one stage the leading soloists of the best Moscow opera theatres, laureates of many international contests, performing in the most famous concert halls. We plan, that in this concert a young soloist of Belarusian opera Yuri Gorodetsky will take part, who has recently become a laureate of the International contest of the Queen Elizabeth — one of the biggest and the most prestigious in the world.
Besides, as earlier, many talented and famous young performers from different countries will take part in the festival alongside with maestros. There are violinists Alena Baeva and Artem Shishkov among them, as well as a pianist Ksenia Bashmet, an oboe player Alexey Ogrinchuk and many others.
— Initially the festival was planned as a project, going on tour in different cities and countries. How does its geography look today?
— Minsk is a point of departure. Then concerts are planned in Germany — in Berlin and Bonn. A Russian capital seriously connects to the festival. Performances are expected in the Grand hall of Moscow conservatory and in Kremlin. Next year, I think, we will “occupy” London as well. It is interested with the festival and there is a preliminary agreement about its conduction. Then we will promote it in Paris. The festival is improved and gradually expands. I am, as its initiator, very glad. As a director and as a man contributing the lion’s share into preparation of the festival, it is pleasant for me when even today the leading musicians note that our festival doesn’t yield to such events in Europe and America neither by the level of organization, nor by the number of invited stars. It is twice pleasant that the festival was accepted by the viewers and they are partial to it. The confirmation — full-houses. I hope, they will also be this time.

Anna Savelieva
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