Also in this issue, the music magazine “Dirigo” opens an important window on the activities of the Associazione Nazionale Direttori di Coro Italiani – as always, under the banner of sharing musical experiences and cultural resources – offering interesting accounts of the many training opportunities together with a variety of useful stimuli for the plurality of figures actively involved in the choral sector.
Special mention must be made of the second edition of the International Choral Campus in Assisi, which was rewarded by a large number of participants from the various regions of Italy: a success sealed by the presence of Maestro Randall Stroope – an honorary member of ANDCI – and representatives of the associations of choral conductors from Argentina, Colombia, Ecuador, Spain and Brazil, who signed the General Agreement, i.e. the founding regulations of the International Federation of National Associations of Choral Conductors (IFCDA), in this all-Italian setting.
It is now publicly evident how the initiatives undertaken and the new project proposals, always ready to seize and enhance every contribution of ideas made available for common growth, have consolidated the unanimous
recognition of our association as an entity deeply rooted in the cultural fabric of choral music, both in Italy and abroad. The training course initiated by Maestro Walter Testolin at Gesualdo Castle (AV), with the aim of networking the most important centres of Renaissance music in Italy, and the masterclass on leadership held by dr. ssa Emanuela Chemolli in Riva del Garda (TN), with the far-sighted aim of transferring the most interesting results of research on leadership developed in the sociological, psychological, neuroscientific and management fields to the professional profile of the choir conductor – as is already the case for the figure of the orchestra conductor in the training programme of the London Symphony Orchestra.
The vision and the overall planning capacity demonstrated by ANDCI, from its establishment to the present day, confirm its special autonomy, the strength of the contribution it is able to offer to the choral world, and its very founding reasons.
Only a little more than three years in the making, which can therefore be said to have only just begun, and yet already punctuated by the appreciation and recognition obtained not only in the context of Italian national institutions, as a result of calls for proposals and ministerial procedures in which ANDCI has participated since its establishment with evaluations and feedback of absolute respect, but also on the international scene: by successfully promoting the birth of the International Federation IFCDA and joining the network of the European Choral Association – Europa Cantat.
The awareness of the results achieved, so far and in such a short time, rather than fuelling forms of self-celebration for their own sake, is a strong incentive for all of us to investigate the motivations that make our association a true communion of sensibilities.
This is another reason why common reflection is always open: on the profiles of the people that our association is called upon to represent, the needs that need to be interpreted, the methods and solutions to try to continuously animate and progressively improve our choral experiences.
Choral conductors are artists, who create magic nourished by sounds and emotions, using their gestures and expressive skills to suggest, direct and share every communicative intention. This is the quality that primarily belongs to us and constitutes the ultimate goal of our training and our human relations: the very consciousness, in the end, on which each of our personal vocations towards this extraordinary ‘instrument’ that is the choir is based, by its very nature made up of people, each with its own kaleidoscope of emotions, passions, cultures, aspirations and motivations.
In this perspective, ANDCI supports all those who want to make a difference, encouraging everyone to stop complaining because they are tired of an ‘unsatisfactory’ past. Those who feel like daring, building, integrating, sharing, find here a space for expression and growth: a community oriented towards change, of which everyone can feel like an architect – according to a personal and at the same time shared vision – committing themselves to a choral world that is always new and on the move.
It also follows from these premises that belonging to ANDCI does not mean being against other realities: ANDCI welcomes all those who wish to meet in a context of confrontation and in full freedom of choice, aware that they can find their own cultural dimension and a space in which to place their personal artistic identity. This vision of the associative and federative reality derives from the centrality recognised in the freedom of personal choice, which is not only an inalienable principle for every individual, but a foundation of values that all representative entities cannot but be guided by. Many people generate a plurality of ideas, and every representative association makes itself the bearer of a variety of activities and educational offers, according to the possibilities and conditions in which it operates and in keeping with the artistic and cultural vision it interprets.
Pluralism is always a principle of democracy and quality at the same time. A great musician and choral man like Maestro Mino Bordignon – he would have been one hundred years old in 2021 – used to observe, with a particularly effective image, how a short lied by Schubert was worth a long symphony by Mahler or a short lyric by Leopardi or an epic opera by Tasso: because what counts is the intrinsic nature of things, the energies it releases and the talent in knowing how to use them. Let us also make these enlightened words our own, recognise their value in the context of our association and bear untiring witness to them in our choral realities.
Professor of Flute at the Conservatory of Music in Avellino. Visiting Professor at Truman State University, University of Columbia-Missouri (USA), Silla University of Busan (South Korea), Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music (Nagoya – Japan). He has given concerts in Italy, Austria, Holland, Greece, Poland, South Korea, USA, China and Japan. As director of the Youth Orchestra of the Avellino Conservatory of Music, he has given concerts in Italy, Lithuania, Turkey. In the Conservatory he collaborates with Rosario Totaro in workshops for vocal ensembles. He started choral conducting courses with Guido Messore. He has attended courses at the Advanced Training School for Choir Directors of the “Guido D’Arezzo” Foundation. He is the director of the Laeti Cantores Choir of Salerno and of the Vocal Ensemble Academia. He has held choral masterclasses at VDU University in Kaunas (Lithuania) and at the University Of Winchester (UK). He conducted, as guest director, in France (Ensemble Vocale LA SESTINA of Nice), in Japan (Chamber Choir of the Aichi Prefectural University of Nagoya), in the UK (Winchester Consort, Chamber Choir of the University Of Winchester and the Vocal Ensemble ACADEMIA) at the local cathedral. He is a member of ACDA (American Choral Directors Association).