Damascus, 17 March 2010 Press release

Music cooperation from Brahms to Einem at the Syrian National Opera

Fourth workshop of contemporary music from Austria and Syria in Damascus

Damascus, 17 March 2010 – A concert in the Syrian National Opera Dar al-Assad marks the highlight of a successful Austrian-Syrian cooperation in the area of modern music and composition which began four years ago.

On 18 March, the orchestra of the music academy in Damascus will present a concert programme featuring works by Hassan Taha, Zaed Jabri, Johannes Brahms, and Gottfried von Einem. Since February, the young generation of Syrian musicians under the guidance of Austrian conductor Ewald Donhoffer and the chief conductor of the Syrian National Orchestra, Missak Baghboudarian, have been intensively rehearsing a programme that explores contemporary Austrian and Syrian music and its roots.

For the first time, Austrian music scientist and composer Gerald Resch will be supporting the workshop through a theoretical workup and analysis of the pieces. This year’s cooperation will also receive support from the Gottfried von Einem Foundation. As in previous years, the workshop concept will be coached and documented by David Müllner, Director of the Austrian Association for Contemporary Art and Music (AACAM). An audio CD of the concert will be available from AACAM in a limited edition.

The cooperation between the music academy and AACAM, which was initiated by the Austrian Embassy in Damascus in 2007, is taking place for the fourth time in 2010. The objective of this cooperation is to allow the young generation of Syrian musicians access to contemporary music and teach them the relevant special techniques and tone colours through practical implementation.

A detailed documentation of the previous workshops is available on the website of the Association for Contemporary Art and Music at www.aacam.at.

For more information, contact:
Austrian Embassy in Damascus
Johannes Högl
Tel.: (+963/11) 613 80 1-00

David Müllner
Society for Contemporary Art and Music