As the Salzburger Festspiele celebrated its centenary, for the first time in our history we created a youth program. For this “jung&jede*r”, we invited Caecilia Thunnissen to create a staged concert for 10+. We suggested to her the Beija-flor String Quartet from the Mozarteum Conservatory, consisting of four highly talented musicians from Japan, Turkey, France and Brazil. They are the leading voice of the new generation, breaking conventions of classical music and string quartets in particular.

According to composer David Dramm, “schräg/strich is a musical time machine that often feels like a roller coaster as it bends, swerves and dovetails back and forth between two different worlds, two different times. At the same time, through a careful analysis of both pieces, I discovered ‘portals’: musical passages in which the two composers connect - often through their love of surprise and chromaticism. (...) This way of using the past is to see and hear the present as it really is (and not as our habits and assumptions lead us to believe). This is the true message of classical music. Always changing, always restless: the seeds of its future are in the hands, hearts and minds of young musicians like Beija Flor. I truly believe that if you listen closely enough, that future can be heard in schräg/strich.”

According to the Oorkaan Method, the four voices of the string quartet are being interpreted as a text of four “characters”. They interact, and while playing the music (by heart), a situation of four youngsters that meet each other on the first day of high school unfolds. Through different passages in the music, development takes place in their individuality and relations. It ends with letting each other go as if they have to say goodbye at the end of their high school. The musicians are thus addressing an existential question: how can you exist as an individual within a group, without losing yourself or causing friction

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