Passion found his reason: music is Jordi Savall what Jordi Savall is to music in the life of this artist and humanist born in Igualada, Barcelona, in 1941. From his childhood in the choir of his city through his graduation at the Conservatory of Music of Barcelona, and his subsequent studies at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis in Switzerland, up until he found the reason for his career: the update of the viola da gamba and ancient music.
As a Violagambista interpreter as much as a musicologist and an orchestra conductor, Savall is a leading researcher and exponent in his specialty. He is after interpreting from historical accuracy, as musicians did in their own times, of the pieces ranging from the Middle Ages to the nineteenth century, and with that aim Savall has founded three prestigious ensembles. That is, Hesperion XX –Hespèrion XXI–, La Capella Reial de Catalunya and Le Concert des Nations. Since 1968, he has published no less than 120 albums, solo or with these groups.
As a teacher, he has taught at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, and he is a guest professor at the Juilliard School in New York. In addition, he has conducted major orchestras, including the Symphonic of the Foundation Calouste Gulbenkian or the Camerata of Salzburg.
Not only is he recognized by the top specialists in their area, but he has received many honours for his work in vindicating the importance of old musical legacy. A few examples are: The Knight of the Legion of Honor of France, the Creu de Sant Jordi of the Generalitat de Catalunya, the Gold Medal of Fine Arts in Spain, International Music Prize for peace Praetorius and Ambassador of the European Union for the intercultural dialogue. Also he has been awarded a Cesar Award from the Academy of French Cinema for the soundtrack of the film ‘All the Mornings of the World’ by Alain Corneau.
To Jordi Savall, art, and music among the arts, gives us meaning as individuals and as societies through History. We compile some of his thoughts on the matter:
Without emotion there is no memory, no memory means no justice, no justice is no civilization and without civilization the mankind has no future.
Music is the only thing that helps us bear the pain.
I believe, as Dostoevsky said, that beauty will save the world, but for this you need to live with dignity and to have access to education and culture.
Music is one of the more universal means of expression and communication, and the measure of its importance and significance cannot be determined according to the criteria of evolution of language, but according to the degree of expressive intensity, inner wealth and humanity.
I am deeply convinced that art is useful to society, contributing to the education of young people, and raising and strengthening both the human and spiritual dimension of human beings.
Ignorance and amnesia are the end of all civilization, because without education there is no art, without memory there is no justice.
The virtuosity is one thing and the ability to move is another. Perfection is necessary to transmit music but absolute perfection, if any, would make it sterile.
The concept of harmony has some form of order and balance which requires the ability to solve even the most complex chaos. Like a symphony. Or the planets. And also, even harder, what men have created.
Probably if there were no music we would not notice anything or life would be unbearable. It is in this sense that I speak of a transcendent experience.
I wish you a happy week,
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