domingo, 17 de abril de 2022

Post scriptum tentang NFT Piano Competition

Akhirnya, Indonesia bisa meng-claim sebagai negara pertama yang membuat kompetisi piano untuk NFT. Sebelum ini, saya memang ternyata adalah musikus klasik Asia pertama yang meng-NFT-kan musik saya, itu sebabnya saya ingin bagikan "reputasi" ini ke 25 pianis di negeri ini yang akhirnya memenangkan kompetisi ini. Tentu saja untuk bisa membuatnya "Non Fungible" dan unik, kita harus membuat karya baru yang belum pernah ada, sehingga saya membuat Variasi dari Do-mi-sol, 3 not paling basic dari tangganada apapun di planet ini. Untuk lengkapnya, baca aja deh https://www.froyonion.com/news/viral/ananda-sukarlan-gelar-kompetisi-piano-nft-pertama-di-dunia . Saya memang sengaja tidak membocorkan cerita-cerita dan latar belakang dari tiap variasi, karena saya berharap tiap pianis bisa menginterpretasi sendiri apa yang ingin "diceritakan" di tiap variation yang semua memiliki latar belakang programatis, kejadian nyata (yang tentu kadang-kadang di dramatisasi untuk keperluan artistik). Anyway, banyak judul dari variations itu bisa di-google, misalnya Organum, Dies Irae dll. Ada beberapa hal yang "tidak terduga" sebelumnya; yahhh, namanya juga pertama kali, pasti ada surprises dong. ........................................................................................................................................ Misalnya, ada dua pianis yang terpilih memainkan "Organum" karena tiap pianis sebetulnya menonjolkan karakternya. Padahal Organum memiliki expressive range yang besar, dari kelembutan sampai kemarahan / agresivitas. Sensivitas dan kelembutan itu ditonjolkan oleh Lavinia Lee, sayangnya dia tidak bisa mengekspresikan agresivitas dan elemen ritmis yang kuat di bagian akhir dan polifoni karya ini. Nah, elemen ritmis ini sangat baik dimainkan oleh Michael Abimanyu Kaeng, yang masih kurang mengeksplorasi elemen "rubato" di bagian awal dan tengah. Rhythmic sense yang kuat dalam dirinya bisa menjadi bumerang dalam memainkan karya-karya romantik yang membutuhkan kebebasan menarik-ulur tempo dan ritme. Memang sih Michael tidak perlu memilih karya-karya romantis, atau Lavinia tidak perlu memainkan karya polifonik seperti Bach, Hindemith atau Shostakovich dalam karirnya kalau memang itu bukan "forte"nya, tapi aspek ini mereka harus lebih kenali dan kembangkan, karena setiap komponis yang telah menyerap musik dari Bach sampai Philip Glass (dan melalui teknik komposisi Beethoven dan Brahms) seperti saya pasti menggunakan berbagai macam elemen dan aspek walaupun cuma "nyerempet". ........................................................................................................................................ Satu pelajaran yang bisa diambil para pianis yang mengikuti kompetisi adalah untuk jangan mengambil karya yang (akan) menjadi terlalu nge-hitz. "Mother's Love" dimainkan oleh puluhan pianis, dan itu menjadikan opsi menangnya mereka menjadi lebih kecil. Mother's Love itu cukup mudah secara teknis, melodinya catchy, dan mungkin juga para emak-emak yang mendorong anak mereka untuk memainkannya karena ehhhmmm .... ya judulnya aja Mother's Love. ........................................................................................................................................ Kalau mau mengkritik diri saya sendiri, ya sebetulnya kompetisi ini kami adakan agak terlalu buru-buru. Intinya memang mau mencetak sejarah sebagai kompetisi piano untuk di-NFT-kan, sebelum keduluan orang / institusi lain terutama di negara-negara yang lebih maju. Sebagai yang pertama, semoga ini memberi kami pelajaran justru dari berbagai kekurangan yang kami telah lakukan. Kedepannya, saya berencana untuk membuat Ananda Sukarlan Award 2022 ini untuk NFT, dengan persiapan (baik oleh pihak penyelenggara maupun pihak peserta) yang lebih baik dan matang, itu sebabnya kami ingin undur penyelenggaraannya sampai paling tidak bulan Agustus mendatang. ........................................................................................................................................ Meng-NFT-kan permainan 25 pianis ini akan makan waktu beberapa minggu, terutama karena NFT itu terdiri dari partitur, rekaman dan tulisan tentang latarbelakang variasi tersebut. Saya juga bangga banget dengan Metaroid , platform marketplace karya anak bangsa 100% yang menggunakan format 1155 yang sangat mengakomodasi segala bentuk musik, karena seperti kita ketahui, NFT selalu identik dengan hal yang visual. Satu hal lagi yang membuat Indonesia menjadi pionir dalam dunia digital.

viernes, 15 de abril de 2022

Pengalaman Bertemu Hantu pertama kali

Saya ini penggemar film horror, walaupun tidak pernah mengkoneksikannya dengan dunia nyata. Buat saya, hantu, dracula, vampires dll itu hanya di dunia fiksi, baik performing arts, film ataupun sastra, makanya itu exciting. Apalagi musiknya, Danny Elfman yang bikin soundtrack Sleepy Hollow itu keren banget, belum lagi "nguik nguik"nya Bernard Herrmann di "Psycho" itu legendaris. Eh, Psycho itu bukan horror sih, tapi shower scene-nya itu iconic banget lah. Dari dulu saya ingin ketemu hantu, dan kayaknya keinginan itu terrealisasi beberapa hari lalu. ......................................... Di Jogja kemarin saya bersama teman saya yang jadi executive producer, Nita, ada keperluan meeting di sebuah hotel yang memang kalau di-google, Google sendiri autofill dengan "angker" dan "horror". Nah sambil menunggu, saya ingin ke toilet, jadi saya sendirian ke sana, sementara Nita menunggu (tapi Nita bisa melihat pintu toiletnya dari tempat dia duduk). Begitu saya masuk toilet (yang tidak terlalu besar, hanya ada 2 urinoir dan beberapa pintu untuk toilet duduk), ada bapak-bapak tua (saya tahunya tua karena beruban ---eehmmm jadi saya juga tua dong?), berbaju batik dan menghadap tembok tapi di pojok, sama seperti kalau kita waktu sekolah dulu dihukum guru. Jadi dia tidak membelakangi kita karena sedang "bertugas sebagai laki-laki" di urinoir. Saya risih dong, jadi saya bilang, "maaf pak, permisi", karena dia memang agak mengganggu karena berdirinya persis sebelah urinoir. Eh, dia cuma kayak menoleh tanpa melihat saya, terus melihat ke tembok lagi. Saya annoyed dong, dan karena saya tidak terlalu kebelet, ya udah saya keluar. Nita tanya "kok udah"? (abis cepet banget kali ya), dan saya cerita tentang si bapak. Terus saya melihat security hotel di receptionist, jadi saya ngadu soal si bapak itu. Eh sang security langsung jawab dgn ramah "oh, iya pak, sini saya antar" (padahal saya gak butuh diantar, saya butuhnya dia ngomong ama bapak tsb). Dia kayaknya ngerti banget masalah ini, terus langsung ke toilet sementara saya ogah-ogahan di belakangnya, jadi sang security masuk toilet dan tidak lama kemudian keluar dan bilang kepada saya yang sudah di dekat pintu toilet "ok pak, silakan sudah bisa". "Loh bapak itu ga mau keluar?" tanya saya. "Udah ga ada pak", jawabnya. Padahal saya tidak melihat siapa-siapa keluar, dan pintu toilet itu cuma satu. Ya udah, saya masuk, dan ternyata memang sudah tidak ada siapa-siapa, jadi ya saya melakukan tugas saya sebagai seorang laki-laki sambil berdiri tegak dan fokus (eh yang tegak dan fokus itu postur saya ya). Aman terkendali. .................................................................. Balik ke tempat Nita, Nita tanya, "si bapak gimana"? Saya jawab "udah keluar kali" tapi kok Nita bilang dia nggak liat siapa-siapa keluar. Nah, gitu deh. Mungkin juga dia bukan hantu, tapi calon aktor Indiana Jones 6 yang umur 80 masih bisa escape ngelubangin langit-langit WC, tapi buat apa juga escape dari saya kan? Saya bukan FBI yang lagi ngejar dia. ......................................................... Gitu deh. Eh udah baca interview saya ama Aldo Sianturi, tokoh bisnis musik Indonesia? Nih deh http://www.aldosianturi.net/30-deep-questions-with-ananda-sukarlan/ . Ok guys, have a nice weekend!

jueves, 12 de agosto de 2021

In memoriam Brigifine Ediansyah Syams

This bloody Covid 19 has been more than a year with us, and it has taken a lot of lives dear to us all. The latest was my friend, the piano teacher Brigifine E. Syams just 2 weeks ago in July, and her mom followed her to heaven yesterday (also of Covid 19). To make the story short, her family was exposed and infected with Covid including her mom. Both Pipin (that's her nickname) and her mom were the ones with the worst conditions, and when Pipin passed away 2 weeks ago, nobody dared to tell her mom (who was still in critical condition, though conscious). I was told that her mom passed away yesterday, still without learning the loss of her daughter (good for her! She will get a nice surprise in heaven like .... "Hey! Whatcha doin' here, baby?" and they will both live in eternal happiness). ........................................................................................................................................ My last conversation with Pipin was in fact not about music, but about .... what else ... yeah, Covid 19 and how it affected (badly, obviously) the musical education. And we talked about how Smart X has saved a lot of us from economic ruin (and in some countries, even collapse. Good for Indonesia for having invented Smart X!). She was interested in joining, but alas .... the virus got her first. And yeah, it was a pity that she didn't know about it before, and once she knew it, it took her too much procrastination to even ask me about it ... and tell her husband about it (it is still unclear whether she did or not manage to tell her husband). She asked me about that latest technology after I wrote an article about artists and our relationship with money https://www.tempo.co/dw/5410/benarkan-anggapan-seniman-sejati-itu-miskin ........................................................................................................................................ Some ex-students of her (since she started teaching, she has given birth to hundreds of pianists! And that wasn't so long ago, since she was still in her early 40s when she died)and even just her friends and colleagues have asked me if I would write any kind of piano piece so they can play it to have her in their memories. I certainly would write something, a small one hopefully before I leave again for my concert shooting tour early next week. Her good friend, Willyana Zhao (Cing Cing is her nickname) has agreed to organize something (online concert, for now) with her (ex)-students and pianists friends and suggested me to write a set of variations .... -- why oh why do small ideas get bigger?? Anyway, there are still several things in my mind to get rid of, but I promised (at least myself) to write something to cherish the memory of Brigifine, whatever it is and may become. May you and your mom Requiescat in Pace, Pipin, Requiem Aeternam.

jueves, 20 de febrero de 2020

Rapsodia Nusantara Wannabees

Not that I am over-optimistic about finishing the whole set of Rapsodia Nusantara (meaning : covering all the 34 provinces of the Republic of Indonesia), but those petitions, appeals, pleadings by (sometimes not so-) young pianists to make Rapsodia Nusantara easier to play (and for non-classical music listeners: easier to listen!) start to tickle my brain. I did write Rapsodia no. 26 (from the song "Tano Niha" from Nias Islands) which is not so difficult, but I guess people would miss the point of showing-off virtuosity if I'd make easy(-ier) Rapsies. ......................................................................................................................................... Therefore I start a new project, making shorter and easier works based on Indonesian folksongs for piano. In fact, I did already a few years ago, "Two Kaili Folksongs". At that time it was for a fundraising project for the victims of tsunami in Sulawesi, so I wanted it to be short and simple so that I could immediately finish and perform it, since I was just given a few days (practically only hours) to prepare it. And then there was the Prelude & Fugue on "Angso Duo", a folksong from Jambi, commissioned by an owner of a music school there a few years ago. ......................................................................................................................................... Last week on my flight from Jakarta to Bilbao, the plane was quite empty. There is this buzz on the Corona Virus, and people in Asia are taking it very seriously. So I wrote a polyphonic game (almost a fugue) on a theme from Ambon, "Gepe-gepe" on board after dinner was served and before I slept. Now, a few days after I landed, I made it into the final part of a kind of fantasy of about 4 minutes. I knew it's not gonna be another Rapsodia, since I have written several, quite difficult ones, based on Ambonese folksongs (no.3 based on "Rasa Sayange" and "Sarinande", no. 4 on "Buka Pintu", and no. 21 on "Goro-gorone"). So, I thought of making the "Kaili Folksongs" and this new Ambonese fantasy as the beginning of a new series of piano works. Now, do you have a suggestion for the title of the whole series? This will be quite "light" for me, mostly done as doodles in my travels like last week. I'm toying the title "Polifonia Nusantara" .... you think it's OK? The term polifonia is because usually they are ... well ... polyphonic, should they be fugues, canons, passacaglia, chaconne etc. Shortly speaking, those kinda music which are not composed anymore these days due to our degraded brains and incapability of listening to more than one melody at a time. ......................................................................................................................................... So let's do this. If I start composing a new piano work based on an Indonesian folksong, I'll keep my mind open. It might be a new Rapsodia, it might be a Polifonia (or whatever we decide to call them). But you can give up your hopes for having easy(-ier) Rapsodia Nusantara from me, ok? Number 26 will be the one and only easy one. It's perhaps the only one playable by the participants of the Junior Category of the Ananda Sukarlan Award.

viernes, 29 de noviembre de 2019

Ghost, not Buster, not a movie, but still in love with them

Spectrophilia: 1. Sexual attraction to ghosts. 2. Engaging in sexual activity with a ghost. .......................................................................................................................................... While religious radicalism (our President proposed a better term: religious manipulation) is very much on the rise in Indonesia and many countries, Spectrophilia is used by religious leaders to lure their followers. Among others, they say that if we die, we will have 72 angels (no description whether they are beautiful, fitting our taste or sexual orientation, or just random angels) serving us continuously. That's why some suicide bombers wore a protector around their vital organ, hoping that they would still "function well" after they enter heaven. .......................................................................................................................................... I don't have spectrophilia, but I did have a period of depression in my early 20s, and so I was fascinated with those dark places that attract people to commit suicide. In those places I sat down and wrote sketches of textures, chords and their progressions and change of colours, inspired by anything in those places. Those sketches remain in a pile of manuscripts, and when the fantastic Duo Xistra whose concert I listened to around 2 years ago asked me for a piece for their anti-mainstream formation of flute & accordion producing that rich and strange atmosphere, I immediately thought to resuscitate these sketches and develop them into real music, among others because duo Xistra were formed in Galicia, and Finisterre was one of the places that fascinated me in my younger years .... to consider committing suicide. .......................................................................................................................................... Cape Finisterre (literally means The End of the World) in Galicia is a beautiful place facing the Atlantic Ocean, wild rough landscapes and amazing beaches, some (protected by the cape) with calm waters and others with strong waves. And the greatest attraction of all times: the sunset over the enormity of the ocean, the sea of the end of the world. Unfortunately it's the real end of the world for many people too. Finisterre has long evoked a profound sense of mystery in the souls of mankind. The roots of the legendary aura of this site, open to the immensity of the Atlantic Ocean, can be found in the mythology of the first European inhabitants. They believed that, after death, the earthly life was replaced by another existence on an island situated to the west, where the sun set. In Celtic legends it is frequent to find images of heroes making their final journey to this paradise in a stone vessel. This merging of stone, sea and spiritual life is still present in different forms along the Costa de Morte (Coast of Death). .......................................................................................................................................... I visited Aokigahara Forest, known to be "suicide forest" since suicidal people could just enter it and they will never return, lured by the "yurei" inside the forest. In the Japanese popular belief, if a person dies in a deep sense of hatred, anger, sadness, or desire for revenge, their soul can’t leave this world and continues to wander, appearing to people affected by the spell or those who cross his path . These souls are called yurei and they can be found in many modern cultural references such as movies as well. Unlike western horror movies, where the ghost wants something specific in order to be able to rest in peace, the yurei wants nothing in particular; they just want to have their curse removed or conflicts resolved. .......................................................................................................................................... When the forest guardians find a dead body, they will take it to a special room designed for dead bodies that can be found next to the forest. Here, the body will be placed on a bed. What is more interesting though, is that a guard will sleep in the same room with the body. This may seem surprising, but it is said that if the corpse is left alone in the room, its yurei will move all night in the dormitories screaming and being deranged. .......................................................................................................................................... I haven't thought of the third piece yet, but I have always been wishing to develop my sketches I did at Isola de San Michele, in Venice. There lies the graves of Stravinsky, Diaghilev, Ezra Pound, Joseph Brodsky and many more. It's an island of cemetary, but it's so peaceful. You should visit it during sunset, and you'll never forget the feeling. But then this has nothing to do with suicides, but yeah, of ghosts. My favorite ghosts, if they haven't reincarnated yet. So, we'll see about this third piece of Spectrophilia. Now, back to writing the actual notes.

sábado, 7 de septiembre de 2019

My Foreword for Rapsodia 23,24 and some new Variations

All the works in this book were written in 2019 and mostly (I would say 80% of them) in Indonesia. It is quite a bleak period at the moment and now, preparing for the publishing of this book, I realized that much of the music reflects this. Religious radicalism and extremism are very much on the rise, constantly threatening the government and the peaceful lives of the society. Until just about a few years ago Indonesia was famous for its unique cultural brand of religious tolerance and nationalism. Even until now, Indonesia is the test bed for political and social theories. Indonesia’s evolution from hundreds of languages and cultures into a single nationalism was used by Benedict Anderson to showcase how communities are “imagined” and created. It's quite amazing how 17,000 islands and dozens of competing histories and geographies were carefully interpreted to create the Archipelagic national identity of Indonesia. My musical works starting 2016 reflected my anxiety and discomfort of the situation: starting from "December 2016", my orchestral works "The Voyage to Marege" and the Marzukiana concertos up to "No More Moonlight Over Jakarta" which depicts the imprisonment of my hero, the Jakarta governor Basuki TP. .......................................................................................................................................... At this moment my feeling is more about nostalgia but also hope for a pluralist, tolerant Indonesia like it used to be, pre-2016. We need this tolerance and common sense back, since they are instrumental to the development of a peaceful state, one that supports progress. Musical as well as other artistic education is crucial in character building of a better society and individuals. .......................................................................................................................................... Rapsodia Nusantara no. 23 is the second Rapsodia that I wrote for the left hand alone (the first was Rapsy 15). I am a strong believer in the potentials of disabled people; their disabilities should not hinder them from developing their talents and contributions to their surroundings. What if a one-handed person had more musical talents than "normal" two-handed people? What is "disability" anyway? I can't tell how many times has it occured, while I was writing down the music in my head, that I had to "simplify" it since the music required more than 10 fingers or 2 hands. That would mean that most of my music is written for pianists of "limited ability", right? Anyway, Rapsy 23 differs from Rapsy 15 in its concept, that I don't want to constantly give the illusion of it being played by two hands. No. 23 is also more percussive and toccata-like, and shows that it's perfectly ok for the piano sound to be played just with five fingers of one hand. And it's very much possible to be a professional pianist with one hand! .......................................................................................................................................... Rapsodia Nusantara no. 24 was commissioned by Tifa Foundation to be premiered at the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival in October 2019. Pelita Harapan University immediately took the iniciative to introduce it (with the composer performing it, since nobody else has played it for the moment) to the Jakarta public. Tifa asked me that it should be based on any traditional music from the regency of Dogiyai in Papua to commemorate the passing away of Father Neles Tebay, who had worked tirelessly to end the long-running violent conflict in Papua using peaceful dialogue. I then found the song (which starts with a chanting) "Domidow" from the specific village Paniai of that regency. .......................................................................................................................................... I don't consider myself a political artist. My position is like that of Shostakovich: music is our defense and statement against the attacks towards us and the society. That's why I am so happy for the birth of a new political party in Indonesia, founded by a group of young, progressive people defending minorities and differences. I have done some events to raise funds for them, among others by auctioning my music. Bagimu Negeri is well-known a patriotic song by Kusbini, and I find it so appropriate to make a series of variations on it (which turned out to be quite dark is some sections, I think due to my --sometimes-- pessimistic views of this moment). The score was then auctioned in a fundraising concert done for this new party, and generously acquired by Imelda & James Joseph who dedicated this music "to Indonesia, our home". .......................................................................................................................................... Both Rapsodia Nusantara no. 23 and 24, as well as the "Bagimu Negeri" Variations are recommended pieces for the Ananda Sukarlan Award 2020, which hopefully would contribute in promoting our (traditional) musical heritage to a bigger public through the fingers of pianists (not necessarily Indonesians) who would perform these works. .......................................................................................................................................... "Mendelssohn's Wedding March Going East" was commissioned by a Meidyati Abadi for the 55th anniversary gift of her parents, Gregorius Kunar Abadi and Katarina Maria Teresia Sugondo, but at that moment her father was lying sick at the hospital. I managed to make a (very amateur) recording through my smartphone to be shown to her father on his sickbed before he then passed away, a few days after the actual anniversary. I wrote this in a few hours, knowing that I didn't have much time and planned to write more variations in the future, but now a few months later, revisiting this music for its publishing I feel that it's fine as it is. I want to keep it simple (musically as well as its pianistic techniques), short and (hopefully) meaningful beyond its notes. .......................................................................................................................................... Variations on the old Christmas song "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing", together with the "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" variations were written for the new Yamaha En-spire grand piano which I was elected to be one of its ambassadors for this year, for their Christmas edition. I must admit, on the contrary of the creative process of the previous "wedding march variations", I got carried away with this. I had much time to write, it was really fun composing 1 or 2 variations a day during a few weeks during my travels and spare time between working on bigger projects without realizing how many variations I have written. When the deadline approached and I had to compile them and restructure the music, I found out that I wrote more variations than I needed! This final work is already cut from the variations that I consider not so good and therefore thrown away. This explains why "Hark!" becomes a quite long and complex work, unlike the light and simpler "God Rest Ye" that only consists of 5 variations. Moral of the story: don't enjoy your work too much! .......................................................................................................................................... Ananda Sukarlan, September 7, 2019 .......................................................................................................................................... P.S. I am deeply grateful to visual artist Julie Putra for her exquisite design for the cover of this book. It's a metaphorical depiction of the Bird of Paradise (Cendrawasih), natural of Papua, using the actual notes of Rapsodia Nusantara no. 24. I do it with music, she with design.

jueves, 9 de agosto de 2018

My Article about Duo 590 published at The Jakarta Post, 10 August

An Intent of "Violation" to Jakarta Music Lovers, by Ananda Sukarlan, composer & pianist (this title is changed in the printed version into : Duo 590 Dazzles Jakarta Music Lovers) .......................................................................................................................................... The viola might not be a popular instrument in Indonesia, but a preview in an online newspaper might be the booster for the public's enthusiasm for violist Adam Cordle's recent concerts in Jakarta. The article was cleverly titled "The handsome American violist will perform in Jakarta", and most probably it was the mixture of the word "handsome" and the mystery of the viola that attracted the audience. And they were not disappointed at all, not only by his physical appearance, but even more by his high musicianship and virtuosity. The viola is slightly larger than a violin and has a lower sound. It serves as a "bridge" between the violin and the cello in chamber music, and for centuries it was considered as such, merely a filling instrument. It wasn't until the 20th century that it earned the stature it deserves, as an instrument with a poignant, warm and mellow sound. Thanks to composers such as Paul Hindemith, William Walton, Toru Takemitsu and Alfred Schnittke it became popular through their works for solo viola and orchestra. .......................................................................................................................................... This young violist who has performed throughout North America and Europe with different partners, chamber groups and orchestras is at the moment in Jakarta and has performed with his duo partner who equally impressed the audience, Indonesian pianist Edith Widayani, as Duo 590. They performed 2 concerts last week in Jakarta and will perform again this weekend. On August 2nd they performed at the Institut Francais d'Indonesie (IFI), with a program of exclusively French Women Composers of the early 20th century: Nadia Boulanger, Fernande Decruck and Marcelle Soulage. The next day they did a "lighter" program, for an afternoon of High Tea at the Writers Bar, Raffles Hotel. .......................................................................................................................................... But first the "590" needs an explanation. 590 is the code for the courses that Eastman School of Music doctoral students take as part of their curriculum. Adam and Edith met in one of these courses in their first semester of graduate study. Also, one of the main interstates in Rochester—where Eastman is located—is also named 590. So, Duo 590 references both how and where they were founded. This year, both musicians have earned their Doctorate degrees on Music from that prestigious institution. .......................................................................................................................................... From the French women's program at IFI, Nadia Boulanger was the only name that is known by most of the Jakarta audience. Her work played was the "Three Pieces for Cello & Piano" and it was Cordle's initiative to play it on an instrument one octave higher -- and it worked so well. But it was Marcelle Soulage's Sonata in A minor, op. 25 that convinced the audience as a forgotten (or ignored?) great work. Soulage (1894-1970) composed prolifically, sometimes writing under the pseudonym Marc Sauval but then was almost totally forgotten after her death. Many of her works remained unrecorded, and in fact a YouTube post of this mentioned Sonata is only available by Duo 590. Listening to this 4-movement work really aroused the audience's curiosity to discover more works by this fabulous composer, and this dazzling Duo 590 should definitely make a CD recording of this forgotten musical gem. .......................................................................................................................................... The concert at Raffles Hotel hit a lighter note. The audience was more relaxed in a much more intimate setting at the Writers Bar, and they even conversed with the musicians. This time "590" performed shorter and "easier listening" works by a.o. Gabriel Faure, Franz Liszt, two movements of the Soulage Sonata (on the request of the audience who grew to love the piece the day before) and the writer's Someone's Stolen Her Heart (and I found it) written during my early conservatory days and --as the title implies-- evoking a not-meant-to-be teenage crush. .......................................................................................................................................... Adam Cordle will perform again, this time as a soloist with a chamber orchestra, on Sunday, August 12th in Soehanna Hall (The Energy Building, SCBD) at 3 p.m, giving the World Premiere of the writer's new work, "Sebuah Simfoni Tentang Perempuan" (A Symphony on Women). This 20-minute (Chamber-) Symphony is commissioned by the former RI President, B.J. Habibie (through the Habibie-Ainun Foundation) to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Reformation in Indonesia, focusing the merits and contribution of women on this aspect. The work is written for solo viola, narrator and 8 instruments. The narration is written by prominent writer Putu Fajar Arcana and will be read by actress Maryam Supraba. Before the new work is performed, Adam will show his prowess by performing my virtuosic works for viola and piano, again with Edith Widayani.

jueves, 26 de abril de 2018

My article for the Autistic Spectrum Digest apps, Sept. 2014

Opening the AS Digest apps on my smartphone, am surprised that my article from 4 years ago was still there. It used to achieve the "article of the month" in September 2014. Anyway, I submitted this article to them. If you wanna download their apps, just go to Apps Store and search "Autistic Spectrum Digest". .......................................................................................................................................... Last year I was taping an interview for one of the most popular talkshows on Indonesian TV, "Tea Time with Desi Anwar". Desi is one of the top reporters in this country, and meeting her in that session convinced me that she deserves her reputation. During the breaks I quickly decided that I will talk about a subject which I never talked publicly before (although everyone who looks at me knows that I suffer from it) which is the Tourette Syndrome (TS), and how I suffered from it. In all the hundreds of interviews with reporters I've done throughout my life, I haven't opened up this matter to any one of them, and they were all nice enough not to touch this matter. At Desi's program, it was me who decided to talk, not her. And then I posted about Hans Asperger a few months ago in my facebook, at the International Asperger's Day on Feb. 18th that coincided with Asperger's birthday in 1906, in which I confirmed and admitted that indeed I am convinced that besides Tourette's Syndrome, I also am an "Aspie" -- the popular term for us who have Asperger's Syndrome. (please read my blog http://andystarblogger.blogspot.com.es/2013_05_01_archive.html for my entry about Tourette Syndrome). It is quite common for a person to have both Tourette AND Asperger, since they both fall under the same autistic spectrum. .......................................................................................................................................... My name is Ananda Sukarlan, and I am a composer and pianist. With this profession, it is not easy to have both Tourette and Asperger's Syndrome. It all began when I was diagnosed in 1996 with a clear Tourette Syndrome and a "high probability" of Asperger's Syndrome. I even don't understand why they put Asperger with an apostrophe "s", which they don't put with Tourette! Oh well, psychologists, they are all full of mysteries. From now on, I'll refer to them with AS and TS only. .......................................................................................................................................... AS remains a controversial diagnosis due to its unclear relationship to the autism spectrum since Mr. Asperger's paper published in 1944. Only in the 1980s that people took interest in it. I have indeed given a clue of my AS in an interview at the Jakarta Post with writer Bruce Emond, back in 2008 during the celebration of my 40th birthday : http://andystarblogger.blogspot.com.es/2010/09/horribly-lonely-in-jakarta-post.html . I quote myself answering Mr. Emond's question: What would people be surprised to know about you?. I answered: I have this strange hormone in me which provokes the feeling of extreme loneliness (even if I am in a crowd). It’s been working inside me since I was a teenager. And that loneliness cannot be cured by just being with someone. When it happens, it usually indicates that I should write music. My best music is written when I am feeling horribly lonely. .......................................................................................................................................... Being lonely, or alone, is a common trait for Aspies. AS, as with the other syndromes in the autistic spectrum, has more to do with social and psychological aspects than a physical one. I won't try to explain everything about AS, since I am not an expert in that, and also since AS is still a mysterious syndrome. The problem is that there are so many speculations about people in the past who allegedly suffered from AS which I find rather disconcerting, such as Steve Jobs, Sir Isaac Newton or Albert Einstein. Even Mozart! With Mozart, his Tourette Syndrome was pretty convincing, but how would one know that he had AS too? Anyway, there are similar traits of people with TS or AS. What I would like to say is just that we, people with AS and TS could, and even should, behave and socialize quite "normally". I certainly --and am sure I represent other people with AS and TS-- do not want to be treated differently. Yeah, during the Nazi era, people like us were put into concentration camps, but that was the case of everyone "different", such as homosexuals etc. In fact, it is proven that people with AS usually excel in one or even several fields, since a particular part of our brain is highly activated. Therefore, we get people with AS like Bill Gates, Lionel Messi or the founder & designer of Pokemon game, Satoshi Tajiri. .......................................................................................................................................... Another thing I would like to rectify is the common belief that people with AS can't be "empathic". That's very wrong. In fact, after talking with fellow Aspies, I can tell you that we are just the opposite: we are hypersensitive people. We just don't know, most of the times, how to express it physically. And I think this is where my music comes from : it can express things which I am unable to express through gestures, words or actions. So, that convinced me again of what I always said about music : We write, perform and play music to express, not to impress.