The 16th International MUSIC Festival "Moscow Forum"
A Milieu for New Music and Aesthetical Discussions
October 22–27, 2019
Rakhmaninov Hall of the Moscow Conservatory
Karo Film Oktyabr Cinema Theater
Concert Hall of the House of Composers
One of the most well-known contemporary music festivals in Russia, the “Moscow Forum,” is being restarted as a platform for music and musical discussion. In the situation of an overabundance of various festivals in Moscow, constantly celebrating some holiday or other, the renewed “Forum” positions itself as a working space for contemporary music and serious aesthetical disputes. The music played in the concert halls will be directly interspersed with polemics uttered by composers, artists and well-known philosophers-theoreticians of contemporary art. The themes of the concerts-disputes are unified by one inclusive idea — the examination of the interactions of the phenomena of contemporary society and the tendencies of contemporary music. The guests of the festival will be Austrian composer Klaus Lang, the French Flashback Ensemble, which develops projects on the intersection of music and multimedia in cooperation with the famous French IRCAM electronic studio in Paris, famous soloists — performers of alternative music: Manuel Zurria (flute, Italy), Stephane Ginsburgh (piano, Belgium), Sahib Pashazade (tar, Azerbaijan). Musicologist Stephan Naumovich (Germany) shall present for the first time the first publication in Russian of the works of one of the most influential musicologists of the late 20th century Carl Dahlhaus.
The concept programs shall present Russian premieres of compositions by cult Austrian composers Klaus Lang, Bernhard Lang, Olga Neuwirth, premieres of works by Stefan Prins, Mauricio Kagel, Alec Hall, Erwin Schulhoff, Faradj Karaev, Alexey Sioumak, Arman Gushchyan and Mehdi Hosseini, as well as works by Moscow-based composers Alexey Sysoev, Vladimir Gorlinsky, Kirill Shirokov and others. The festival will conclude with the demonstration at the Large Hall of the Karo Cinema theater Oktyabr of the Russian premiere of the silent film of Hans Karl Breslauer Die Stadt ohne Juden [The City without Jews] (1924, Austria) with the music of Olga Neuwirth, which will sound in performance by the Studio for New Music ensemble under the direction of Igor Dronov.
The program of the concerts and discussions of the Forum is grouped around three absolutely different themes: Free Radicals, Eroica — Erotica and Local vs. Global. In the first of them the following issues shall be researched: what do we examine today as radical art? To what degree is this art really radical, if it is based on and in many ways provides variations of ideas generated a hundred years ago? Does radical art present a form of struggle for social progress and a new, more perfect world order? Or is it a new conventional format produced by numerous cultural institutions of late capitalism?
Eroica (carrying out acts of bravery) and Erotica (manifestation of love) pertain to the oldest and most traditionally “stable” cultural concepts. However, in the present day, their pathetically romanticized interpretation may rather be encountered in genres of popular art – such as, for example, films for wide audiences or pop songs. Within the framework of the festival we shall make the attempt of analyzing how in contemporary art these conceptions are subjected to deconstruction and radical artistic reevaluation. In other words, we shall attempt to research the construction and deconstruction of feelings directly.
Local — Global: In the era of globalization how does the development take place of the art of music in countries which do not pertain to Western Europe, so to speak, the regions “to the East of the West,” which during the course of the entire 20th century in many ways defined the development of new music? Are the cultures of these regions eternally in the state of “catching up” and “looking up to” the West, or, already in view of their lesser degree of integration into the processes of total globalization, do they have a greater chance in their independent development to preserve their cultural identity, which is becoming more and more discernably lost by the contemporary international mainstream? How can one avoid the vortex of cultural nationalism and at the same time not dissolve within the all-neutralizing space of globalist standards? These questions will be discussed by musicians and philosophers directly on the stage of the concert hall in the format of a round table which will be held during the discussion-oriented intermissions in the middle of each concert.
The daytime educational program of the Moscow Forum is organized in collaboration with the portal Stravinsky.online and includes a six-day intensive seminar for culturologists and music critics, as well as master-classes of famous performers of contemporary music visiting from other countries. Proposals for the seminar shall be accepted on the basis of competition. The program of the daytime events shall be published on October 1 on the website of the Festival and on the portal Stravinsky.online.
Artistic director of the festival — composer Vladimir Tarnopolski.
The festival is organized with the support of the Austrian Cultural Forum Moscow, Italian Institute for Culture in Moscow, The National Fund of Copyright Holders’ Support, Wallonie-Bruxelles International (W.B.I.), The Ministry of Culture of Azerbaijan Republic.