Reuben Pace

Interview with Mro Robert Ferrer – City of Humanity’s I Opera Conductor

We met with Mro Robert Ferrer, some weeks ago, discussing his visit in our Malta, on April. Below you will find our discussion & some interesting information about the City of Humanity Opera in November 2018.

Q.: Good-afternoon Mro Robert. Nice to meet you, to begin with. Now, starting with some details about your visit. Could you tell us the purpose of the visit? What did you see & what did you expect to see?
R.F.: Nice to meet you too! Unfortunately, due to limited time on this trip, I spent most of my time in Valletta. The main things I did here were teaching classes & meetings. Where for the latter we talked about the preparations for the premiere of Reuben Pace's opera City of Humanity 1 - Behind the Fortifications in November 2018.
It was crucial to visit the venue for this premiere, the Republic Hall at the Mediterranean Conference Center, to explore the acoustics and have an idea about the spaces.
Then, on Friday 13th April I checked Teatru Manoel. I spent my day easy, with a coffee & pastizzi. I saw also the Old Theatre and the views from the Barrakka Gardens, etc.
Also, I attended the concert of the project Hearing Orpheus Today the same day in the evening at Casino Maltese.
On Saturday 14th April we visited Birgu, in order for us, to observe the history of Malta in Pace's opera. In the evening we had some free time to relax. We took some food (of course fish and other specialities) by the seashore.
I left some important places to see for my next trip in October-November 2018. I'm very interested in Gozo, as I heard a lot about this amazing place. Also, I bought some books on Malta's history and Maltese language. I want to have a deeper approach to this interesting culture and discover more venues next time.
Q.: What activities/talks did you do whilst here? Anything that impressed you more (from the things you did or the people you met)?

R.F.: On Thursday 12th April afternoon I was teaching a lecture on Spanish music from the 20th and 21st centuries at the University of Malta. Then, on Friday 13th and Saturday 14th April morning we had a semin in Conducting. We worked on Janáček's Sinfonietta with the students accompanied by two great pianists.

It was important to meet them and prepare together this outstanding score. Through this, I could choose two students (Simona Cavalieri and Luke Vella) to become my assistants for the production of City of Humanity. All the people I had the chance to meet during these days here were so kind and friendly. I'm looking forward to coming next time and enjoying more music and life experiences in Malta.
Q.: Any concluding thoughts?
R.F.: My next visit will be on 20th October-17th November 2018 for the rehearsals and premiere of City of Humanity I. I can't wait to meet more people! 
Some more information on Robert Ferrer.
Born in Faura (Valencia, Spain) in 1984, conductor Robert Ferrer was entitled degrees in Conducting
and Tuba by the Conservatory of Music "Joaquín Rodrigo" in Valencia, where he studied with teachers
Manuel Galduf and Miguel Fabra, respectively. He has attended courses and masterclass in Conducting
with Sylvain Cambreling in Mainz and Luxembourg, with Zsolt Nagy in Brno and with Yaron Traub,
Enrique García Asensio and Cristóbal Soler in Valencia.
In 2008-2009 he was a Fellow of IVM, which was awarded a scholarship to continue studies in
Conducting with Czech conductor Jiří Bělohlávek in Madrid, Paris and London. During the 2010-2011
the academic year he was a Fellow of the Caja Madrid Foundation to study a postgraduate degree in
Conducting at HAMU in Prague, with teachers Tomáš Koutník and Lubomír Mátl. Nowadays he is
doctoral candidate in Conducting, speciality "Interpretation and theory of interpretation" at JAMU and
a doctoral candidate in Musicology at MUNI in Brno, where he lives now. From academic year 2017-
2018 he is a teacher at Valencian International University (VIU).
He began his career as conductor with the ensemble I.E.S. La Vall de Segó (2000-2002). In 2007 he was
assistant conductor of the Youth Symphony Orchestra in La Vall d ́Uixó, from 2008 to 2010 assistant
conductor of Manuel Galduf in JOGV and in 2016 assistant conductor of Cristóbal Soler in the Youth
Symphony Orchestra of FSMCV. He has led groups as principal or guest conductor such as Orchestra
Mare Nostrum in Valencia, Youth Symphony Orchestra of FSMCV, Symphony Orchestra of the
Conservatory of Music in Valencia, Youth Orchestra of the Region of Valencia (JOGV), Ensemble
Opera Diversa in Brno... performing in festivals as the International Contemporary Music Festival
"Ensems" in Valencia, Cycle "Las Artes en Paralelo" from Palau de la Música in Valencia, Festival
International de Musique Universitaire in Belfort (France), Biennale de la Méditerranée in Thessaloniki
(Greece), Cicle de concerts somelgrup... and in concert halls as prestigious as the Municipal Centre for
Musical Activities of Thessaloniki, Mozart ́s Hall of Reduta Theater in Brno, Martinů ́s Hall of HAMU
in Prague, Centre Chorégraphique National in Belfort, Teatros del Canal in Madrid, Palau de les Arts
and Palau de la Música in Valencia, Auditori de Castelló, Auditori de Peñíscola, Teatro Capitolio de
Godella, Teatro Castelar de Elda, Palau d ́Altea, among others. In 2006 he founded the Ensemble Col
legno, and as its artistic director and chief conductor he has conducted various premieres of new works
and other performances in Valencia and abroad. As conductor of this group has recorded several CD,
among which music for interdisciplinary show Lluís Guarner: per què cantar a la terra i al mar? (2013),
the CD entitled Homenaje a la M.I. Academia de la Música Valenciana (2014) and the last CD including
ensemble and chamber works by Leonardo Balada for Naxos Records (2017).
He has served on various occasions as a member of Composition ́s jury in Contest for Young Creatives
"Valencia Crea" of the council of Valencia. He is a board member and has been part of various
associations and organizations such as the M.I. Academy of Valencian Music from 2010, Association
of Electroacoustic Music of Spain (AMEE) from 2013, Spanish Society of Musicology (SEdeM) from
2015 and Spanish Association of Conductors (AESDO) from 2018.
From the season 2017-2018 he is the assistant conductor in the National Theater in Brno. His next projects
include concerts with the Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra Olomouc, Czech Philharmonic Choir Brno,
Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, among others.
Contact info:
E-mail: ferrerrobert@hotmail.com
Tel: +420775405132
Website: www.robertferrer.com

Photo credits:
DSC_4702: Miky Sütö
750_6857 and 750_6790: Vít Kobza

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