Viet Nam News
Việt Nam National Opera and Ballet (VNOB) will have shows to kick off its new season on March 26 and 27 at the Hà Nội Opera House. Entitled Around the World, the show will include music pieces: extracts from ballets and operas which will be performed by leading VNOB artists. The show will be led by Argentinian conductor Martin Garcia Leon.
Leon has a bachelor’s degree in orchestral conducting from the National University of Arts in Argentina. In 2018, he conducted the Saint Petersburg Symphony Orchestra and at the Disat Terra Music Festival organised by the Fundación Antiqua Nova in Choele Choel, marking the world premiere of several works by Argentinian composers.
Tuyết Hoa interviewed Leon about his first time conducting VNOB
Why did you accept the invitation to conduct Around the World?
I accepted this wonderful offer for Around the World because I think the performance will show people in Hà Nội how the music can be so wonderful, so emotive, energetic and enjoyable no matter what part of the world one is in.
We can show a little bit of very different cultures and I think that is magical. That’s why the project come to my attention. I always wanted to conduct on the Asian continent to learn more about your culture, to try to learn about your language and to communicate with each other through the music.
I think the way to make music more exciting in Việt Nam and in Argentina is very different. We both can learn from each other new ways to make this special art.
Have you ever attended any programme like this in Việt Nam?
No, I have not had the pleasure before, but I cannot express my happiness at being in Việt Nam for the first time and having the honour to conduct VNOB at the Hà Nội Opera House.
What do you think of the show you will perform with VNOB?
I think Around the World is an excellent idea for opening the season of a theatre. We can show a mix of different pieces of different cultures and all have a great time – the audience of Hà Nội, the VNOB musicians and me.
It’s going to be a beautiful night full of happiness and fireworks. I like the programme very much.
Which part of Around the World is most impressive?
I think the most impressive piece in Around the World is the overture of Ruslan and Ludmila of Glinka. It has so much energy that it made me jump on the podium as much as Dvorak’s Slavonic Dance No 8.
They have so much energy that it is impossible to me not is moved by these works.
As young conductor, what do you think about the symphonic music scene? Are there any obstacles to its development and what are the solutions?
As far as my country and all of Latin America are concerned, there is an economic crisis. Symphonic orchestra now is facing many obstacles. The most of the orchestras depend on the state or a ministry of culture.
The number of artists making a living from the orchestras is shrinking because of the unstable policies of the states. A solution that I can propose is to find private investors who want orchestras in Argentina or Latin America not to depend too much on the state in this time of crisis. I do hope orchestras can find an international investor.
What will you say about the show to audiences?
Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy this amazing concert. You will laugh, cry and be touched in different ways by the music and so much more. We are going to have the ballet and choir of VNOB as well as the singers.
We have it all in just one concert. It is full of good energy and happiness, and all this is for the audience of Việt Nam. You would honour VNOB and me with your friendly presence. VNS