Sunday, July 22, 2007

Vienna Art Orchestra celebrates its 30th anniversary

The Vienna Art Orchestra celebrates its 30th anniversary by releasing a 3 CD box, band founder Mathias Rüegg tells Sylvain Siclier ( Le Monde ). At the beginning the VAO played in the compositional tradition of Duke Ellington; meanwhile he is especially interested in sound, rhythm and the ensemble playing. With new musicians he listens for their individual sound and their capability of interpreting a theme.
Most musicians want to improvise and are not so much interested in the themes. Sometimes he explains the orchestra's aesthetics in political terms; but then it was founded in the era of postmodernism which also was a political movement. Humor does play a role in the music, but he mainly uses it as a color, not just to be humorous. The VAO often is seen as Austria's musical ambassador, even though Rüegg himself is Swiss and most of the band members are not Austrian either.

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