An Adventure in All senses of the Word

19 June 2019
José Vicente Castelló

José Vicente Castelló



Once again en route!

This time with a very special long-term project as usual in MCO, and we have called it MOZART MOMENTUM 1785/1786 to celebrate the most productive period in the life of Mozart between 1785 and 1786.

In addition, this theme is linked to what can be a revolutionary contribution to the union of the classical and technological world under the enigmatic name of: UNBOXING MOZART.

An interactive, visual, audible and emotional experience; wait a moment! Isn’t that classical music itself? Yes of course, but why not also link it to game design?
People must think we are crazy!
Well, nothing is further from reality, the first feedback from the audience has been really surprising and satisfying.

Everything began with the attendance of a rehearsal in which our beloved colleague Anna Matz, with a masterful capacity of communication (really impressive), explained to the audience the whole project and made them participate “within the orchestra” during the rehearsal, even allowing them to decide which instruments they wanted to hear separately.
The faces of amazement and enjoyment of all were indescribable...
Then they were given an object called a “sound box” which consisted of a tablet inserted into a wooden box with a speaker.
They could try out different instruments through the “sound box”.
Then they simply had to follow the indications that appeared on the screen to follow a tour around the concert hall, where they could interact with other participants and their instruments, and finally “play” a movement from one of the concertos that we performed on stage.
I am sure that the perception of the concert of these people was absolutely different than what they are used to.
Well, all of this started on the first day in Frankfurt and in a slightly sad way because just upon arrival we heard from our office that our captain on this new trip, the pianist Leif Ove Andsnes, had to cancel his presence due to severe pneumonia…
Sad news that fortunately quickly became good news again, when we knew that the person who was going to replace him was Lars Vogt!
This, worth the football simile, is as if instead of Messi playing we were going to have Cristiano Ronaldo!
Lars, with his style, infected us with his cheerful character and his charisma from the first moment. We knew that we were going to be in good hands and that we were going to enjoy and most importantly: make the public enjoy.

The Kick Off (following the football simile) was in Frankfurt in a special concert, since we had the presence of Cliff Eisen, professor at Kings College in London who illustrated to us the historical and personal context of Mozart in the years of his “momentum”.
We must remember the laughter of the people as soon as he started when he said: “Ladies and gentlemen, I am not Simon Rattle!” (The truth is that his hair is exactly the same!)
After Frankfurt we went to Berlin to play in the Kammermusiksaal of the Philharmonie, a hall that has been welcoming us in a very warm way lately (the concert was "sold out").
Berlin is the home of MCO since our offices are there, and establishing a link with the city has always been a priority that is becoming increasingly important.

Following the route, we entered French territory in three significantly different cities.
Grenoble, a place at the foot of the French Alps with an excellent gastronomy and a cozy and lively historic center. Personally I had never been there and I would not mind spending a vacation period discovering the area!

The next day we went to Evian, on the French shore of Lac Léman. A small town that has one of the most special concert halls in the world, La Grange au Lac. A hall made entirely in wood for the famous Rencontres Musicales created by Rostropovich and Stern.
A festival that our dear friend Philippe Bernard has re-launched a few years ago masterfully and to which some of us feel very attached.
Everything in the middle of the purest nature (the interior of the room recreates the same exterior forest) and in an exclusive environment. Too bad we were only there one day!
The next destination: Paris.
Cosmopolitan, boisterous, sleepless, in short... you could not have more contrast with Evian!
MCO does not cease to amaze me, after three frantic days of suitcases, airplanes, hotels... the orchestra is able to be so focused during the concert so that the energy flows like a pressure cooker! The power of music has no limits!

And finally the last stop of the trip: Lisbon.
In Lisbon we meet, for the last concert, another amazing pianist and friend to come to cover the absence of Lars: our beloved Alexander Melnikov.
What a privilege it was to rediscover Mozart’s piano concertos with him in another prospective, based on the extreme sensitivity and capacity of surprise to everyone.