9 months ago

Diplomatic World_nummer 56.

in renowned orchestras

in renowned orchestras operating from Brussels, the institution is also exceptionally considered for its tradition in counterpoint and fugue and honored for its specific artistic approach to the doctorate in the arts. Historically interested musicians such as the family Kuijken created an internationally recognized Early Music department in the nineties, which today gets a new international image. While other music institutions in Flanders diminish their parts in early music, Brussels continues to expand artistic bridges over time. The presence of the music library, with its important 17th and 18th century music, in particular the two private collections Westphal and Wagener, contributes to this fully. In the middle of the capital of Europe, melting pot of countless cultural movements, its jazz department reflects this cultural synergy both intra muros and outwards in the socio-artistic landscape, leading in Flanders and throughout the world. Every year, the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel grants the Toots Thielemans Jazz Award, with the explicit approval of Belgian and Flemish jazz icon Toots himself. The flourishing department of Musical at the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel — the only one in Flanders — offers another vibrant answer to the growing demand for other western traditions, rivaling Dutch and German institutions on a high artistic level. However, there is a deep artistic concern how to master art, economic efficiency and productivity: which amount of subsidies to give to art, how many orchestras to retain, how autonomous music institutions are to be? The word ‘production’ entails a paradox. From an artistic point of view, a production is a shared outcome and presentation of an esthetic work, realised through collaboration between artists. Production from an economic perspective points to the making of goods and processes, closely linked to fast consumption and profit. However, the Latin ‘producere’ in the sense of ‘to develop, realize, expand, strengthen, lead further’ offers us the right educational perspective: developing young people, realizing ideals, expanding knowledge, making expertise stronger, leading the world further. The pedagogical complexity of music education sharpens that paradox. On the one hand, art is at odds with the economic, technological and mediatized society. The art of music is a challenge in and for society: music is a ‘slow science’ (a concept from Isabelle Stengers), growing from within hard labour, experience and exchange. An artistic development asks for time, takes time — within a society that is more and more characterized by everything that is fast. Music is an art that exorcises time: The fame of the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel also resonates through its symphony and harmony orchestras, its collaborations with the cultural field in Brussels and abroad, with embassies and music houses. Numerous small ensembles of chamber music, jazz or early music spread their art on the Brussels stages — MIM, Flagey, the Markten, ... and internationally — Porto, Santander, .... The level of artistic excellence leads to an almost natural flow of its young talents on the professional artistic scene, in renowned orchestras, at international positions and competitions. MUSIC: A ‘SLOW SCIENCE’ IN A WORLD OF PRODUCTION 150 The 50th jubilee this year shows that the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel has been able to move forward with artistic councils, in which many staff members and cultural partners participate, being focal points for initiative and dialogue.

dancing on the tight rope between old and young, between exploring personality and mastering tradition. Music is an art that cannot be fixed nor put in a museum, as it is lived and revived by each new generation, again and again by way of transmission, interpretation and creation. On the other hand, society needs artists: people who share a rich cultural tradition and offer new aesthetic perspectives, who open unexplored domains and lift a veil of daily worries. That is why the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel meets society with its music practices, with its own slow science, its capacity to question the prevailing view of the world in an artistic way. Therefore it is important to preserve its autonomy concerning artistic choices and policy and to develop its international resonance. That is why it is exemplary in being traditional and rebellious, in being a conservatory and a laboratory, in being a house and an open space. Finally, Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel is ready for another 50 years to be a lively artistic biotope, with international identity and music excellence. The heart of the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel continues to beat in Brussels and you are invited to share its music! Rendez-vous! Kathleen Coessens, Director of the School of Arts, Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel 151