This is an interview that Mexican composer of international repute Ana Lara gave me on June 17th, 2009 after meeting her at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts (formerly Orange County Performing Arts Center), where her music was being performed.
Thank you for your interest and for remembering me. I feel very flattered.
I’ve answered your questions below.
—– Original Message —–
Dear Ana Lara
This is Omar Ávalos, I met you at the world premiere of your composition Altre Lontananze in Costa Mesa last Thursday. I have followed your career for some years. I was at the premiere of another work of yours, in Long Beach, with the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra directed by Enrique Diemecke. I also had the opportunity to see your work Angels of Fire and Ice with the Pacific Symphony, directed by Carl St. Clair in 2007.
I remember reading an interview with you in an article, “Cinco compositoras mexicanas,” it was either that article or it was in the book Visiones Sonoras but I don’t remember exactly.
Well, speaking of interviews, perhaps you can answer some questions. Thanks in advance for responding.
1. In your work, Altre Lontananze, I hear influences of Edgard Varèse and Krzysztof Penderecki. What composers have influenced your work in your own words?
As you probably know, I studied in Poland from 1986 to 1989 so there is some influence of both Penderecki and Lustoslawski although It’s not so evident in Altre Lontananze but certainly in other works of mine like Eve or Angels of Fire and Ice that you heard.
I have many other influences that change over time but I feel very close to Italian composers like Scelsi and Sciarrino in their search for timbres. In Altre Lontananze the influence of Bach is also present.
2. Sometimes one hears of “two Mexicos” or “the other Mexico” when referring to the abundant Mexican population in the United States. Would you like for your works to be effectively diffused among this population?
Of course. Through my work I discovered that there is a close relationship between my music and Mexicans in the U.S., I feel very well heard. I believe that music is a very important communication and I am always grateful when someone comes into resonance with what I want to say musically. To touch the soul of another, to communicate through sound seems like a miracle.
3. One last question. How do you think your work, and those of other Mexican composers, can be diffused and become better known among the US-based Mexican population?
Fortunately there are many Mexican festivals that include music in many parts of the United States. I think with the arrival of Dudamel at the LA Philharmonic we have a new space to diffuse not only Mexican (art) music but also Latin American (art) music. The music takes time to not only to be heard but to also take its place in the greater repertoire. I think that the more and more that you hear our music in the United States awareness will increase. It is also possible to know the music of Mexican authors through the Internet.
I hope I have answered your questions well
Thank you very much for your interest