TIZIANA BERTONCINI

[I herewith kindly ask you to respect the authors rights especially of the interviewed musicians and not to use it without asking our permission. Thanks for your solidarity!]

CLH: „Tiziana, what are your criteria of quality of Improvised Music?“

T.B.: „It´s a sculptural quality, a three-dimensional aspect; when the music has not only one or two dimensions -so that it is never, in neither way flat – but it is sort of architectural.  You could say that this is more a compositional view, but I am very interested in perceiving the music with the qualities of the space: different layers, relationship between solids and voids, foreground and background, etc.

Therefore, when the improvisation is either just about blabbering around or it is very reduced and nothing is happening – which is in both ways kind of flat (in my opinion, of course) – it becomes a “style”, after a while it loses its risky aspect (which is very essential in improvisation) and it becomes predictable.“

CLH: „Does the communication or the ability to communicate of a musician make this music? Is it like the base for this music?“

T.B.: „The ability to communicate?

Well, when you play a concert there must be an opening toward the audience and somehow the intention to project the music so that you are not closed into yourself.“

CLH: „I mean amongst the musicians.“

T.B.: „Yes and no. Yes and no because it should not be intentional. Of course you are neither closed in your own world and nor just reacting to the others, there must be a sort of… I think that the relationship with the others on stage is happening on a meta level. And I hope Thomas will not use this word because it´s his [laughs].“

CLH: „But this is also true for a normal conversation isn´t it?“

T.B.: „Yes but in a normal conversation I will listen to what you mean. And with the music I will not listen to what you mean when you are playing, so there is another…“

CLH: „You are sure about that?“

T.B.: „Yes I am sure that I won’t think about what you mean when you play. It´s something that will not go through an interpretation level.“

CLH: „So the information is conveyed with different means? Is information conveyed between the players?“

T.B.: „In my experience – this is probably how I play – the awareness of what the others are playing and what I am playing is always very subtle. It´s not so.. I don´t know, it´s not so present in a rational way. It´s like when you are in the fog, everything is blurred and you see something around. Sometimes one object gets sharp, but generally the images are out of focus.

Ecco, for me the Improvisation is this. When I play it´s like to be in such a space.“

CLH: „What is the role of Psychology in this world that you just mentioned?“

T.B.: „Psychology?… hum.. For me?“

CLH: „For you and the others. Does it play a role?“

T.B.: „I don´t think I thought about a psychological side in this, no. Although I think a lot about psychology but not in the improvisation/music making, no.“

CLH: „Shall the sounds that you play be understood by the fellow musicians and if yes what does understanding mean?“

T.B.: „No!“ (laughs)

CLH: „They shall not be understood?

T.B.: „No!“

CLH: „But they shall still be directed?“

T.B.: „No, I can`t say what the others have to do..“

CLH: „That´s clear but do you react on sounds or person or on both?“

T.B.: „No i think I`m just listening to sounds. On the sounds, yes.“

CLH: „Do you know while you play if an IM works out fine and what are your criteria to say it works or it doesn´t?“

T.B.: „It´s a question of perception of course maybe there the psychology could come into account (laughs) because if you have a bad day, or you feel very down and very unsure of yourself and not good in your skin and this feelings follow you on stage then you will feel that you played very bad and so the perception will be distorted by a certain psychological state. But when the psychological state is – let´s say – neutral then it has to do a lot with the flow; how you feel that the things are played, without that you make choices and also how this is happening with the other musicians. That there are some coincidences and unpredictable and unforeseeable things which…“

CLH: „…with the other musicians as you just said, which includes that you want to feel connected at least.“

T.B.: „This for sure. I didn´t say the opposite, no.“

CLH: „So the connection would be there…

Is there in Vienna a specific Improvised Music language or klischee; or a school or a certain style that you would call Vienna typic?“

T.B.: „First of all the Vienna school, some people of the Vienna school claim that the Vienna school was before the Berlin school so the reductionistic approach was born in Vienna and not in Berlin.

So there is a tendency to reductionism and there is a lot of will to go beyond the pure instrumental approach to use the instruments in an extended way.“

CLH: „Can you try to confine it more what makes it different to „the languages“ in Cologne or Boston or Bay Area or Berlin… You said there is this reductionist movement, the extended technique thing… Do you experience this style at times as superficial?“

T.B.: „Yes, when it´s a music without inputs, without a risk.

Some times the music is really without risk in my point of view.

By the way: In Vienna there is also a lot of interest in electronics so some times the instruments go through electronics.“

CLH: „So could I call  it a style already?“

T.B.: „Yeah I think it is very much of a style.

Compared with Berlin I find there the people more open; the Berlin style is not anymore so strict and rigid and the musicians are really more into music than into a style. Ecco.“

CLH: „Is there a typical kind of musician in Improvised Music from Vienna?

This is very close to what you already said…“

T.B.: „Should I give names?“

CLH: „Well rather general, in Berlin the typical guy from Berlin would wear a suit I guess…“ laughs

T.B.: „It depends on the musicians. Some like to be elegant and some not.

Maybe the hair cut (laughs)…“

CLH: „Thank you very much, Tiziana.“

[I herewith kindly ask you to respect the authors rights especially of the interviewed musicians and not to use it without asking our permission. Thanks for your solidarity!]

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