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15 Questions to Ana Vidovic

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Hi! How are you? Where are you?
Hello, I am doing really well, thanks. I am in Carson City at the moment just getting ready to go to Las Vegas in couple of hours.


What's on your schedule right now?

I am just touring right now. I played "Concierto de Aranjuez" (one of my favorite pieces) last night with the Carson City Symphony and had a wonderful time. In the next couple of weeks I will be on the road. I am going to Las Vegas, NV, Madison, WI, Bloomington, IN and Portland, OR.


If you hadn't chosen for music, what do you think you would do right now?

I really don't know, that is a tough question. I just can't imagine my life without music. Music always had such a strong influence in my life. My brothers and I were always surrounded with it. I do have couple of other interests though. One of my biggest interest is psychology so perhaps I would have done something in that field if I had not chosen music.


What or who was your biggest influence as an artist?

So many wonderful people. I met so many talented people that really inspired me throughout my life and I am grateful for that. My brother Viktor first inspired me to start playing guitar cause he was and still is such a great musician. My parents inspired me as well. They always surrounded us kids with music. My wonderful teachers Istvan Romer and Manuel Barrueco. They taught me everything I know and again, inspired me in so many ways. Great artists like Martha Argerich, Placido Domingo, Sviatoslav Richter and many more.


What's the hardest part about being a musician and what's the best?
There are so many wonderful moments, but there are also some very hard ones. I think that is the case with everything that we do in life. I love performing for people, I really live for that. It is so rewarding to be able to share your music with your audience, touch them with it and just have that special connection with them. When I feel that connection, that to me is a successful concert. Then again, there are difficult times. Life of a musician is not easy. There are many sacrifices that you need to make, but again, it is all worth it as long as you really love what you do.


What's your view on the classical music scene at present? Is there a crisis?
I wouldn't say that there is a crisis, but things are definitely changing. It is definitely not the same as it was 40 of 50 years ago. We live in a world where we are surrounded with popular music that is so tremendously marketed and is everywhere we go. I think that we (classical musicians) have a mission to introduce our music to as many people as we can, bring more young people to classical concerts and present it in a way that it does not seem as classical music is still something that is considered so "serious or too "formal".


Some feel there is no need to record classical music any more, that it's all been done before. What do you tell them?

I don't think that is true. I think we can always do more and more. I think that every performer brings something new into their performance. It is all in the way you present something. There is so much great music out there. And also, there is a lot of new music composed and we need to present that to our audience as well. Today, many musicians from different musical styles colaborate with each other and try to find a new way of introducing music to audiences. I enjoy listening to a great jazz musician who colaborates with a classical musician.


What constitutes a good live performance in your opinion? What's your approach to performing on stage?

As I mentioned before, I really love the connection with the audience while performing. There is something very special about it. To me the most  important thing is when I feel that the audience is completely with me. You can almost feel like they are breathing with you. When I am on stage, I try to forget about everything and try to say as much as I can with the music I am playing.


What does the word "interpretation" mean to you?

There are so many different levels of "interpretation". I try to put my soul into my music and allow my feelings to come through which  is one of the biggest challenges for me. You really need to get into the core of the piece and live with it for a long time to be able to "portrait" in your own unique way. And even when you think that there is nothing else that can be done with that piece, there is always so much more that you discover with time so it is really important to live with it for a long time. It is so interesting to see how your "interpreation" changes throughout the years. I used to be concerned about how virtuostic something sounded, but today I try to bring more depth into my playing.


True or false : It is the duty of an artist to put his personal emotions into the music he plays.
True


True or false: "Music is my first love"

True


True or false: People need to be educated about classical music before they can really appreciate it.
False

 

You are given the position of artistic director of a concert hall. What would be on your program for the season?
I would like to have more of a mixture of musicians with different musical styles and backgrounds. You really need to find a way to introduce music to as many different audiences as you can. I'd like to have couple of really good classical players, but also some jazz and more contemporary artists.


14. What's your favourite classical CD at the moment?

It's hard to say. I like so many, but one of my favorites is Jacqueline du  Pre's unforgettable performance of the Elgar Concerto.


Have you ever tried playing a different instrument? If yes, how good were you at it?
Yes, I played piano for couple of years. My other brother Silvije is a pianist so he taught me how to play. I really enjoyed playing piano very much, but decided to continue with guitar. I don't remember how good I really was at it, but I do remember that I learned so much about phrasing and dynamics. That was a great experience.

Picture by Michael Benabib

Discography:
Ana Vidovic (Croatia Records) 1994
Gitara (Croatia Records) 1996
Guitar Recital (Naxos) 1998
The Croatian Prodigy (BGS Records) 1999
Live! (Croatia Records) 2001
Guitar Virtuoso (Mel Bay Productions) 2006


Homepage:
Ana Vidovic

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