jeudi 8 septembre 2011

John Zorn reçoit un prix en Belgique - Récit


Le 12 août dernier, John Zorn recevait le prix Magister Artium Gandensis 2011 de l'Académie royale des Beaux-Arts de Gand, en Belgique. Orlo Lasso, un lecteur du Zornographe, était présent et raconte la cérémonie.

With some of my friends, I was able to attend the ceremony giving the Magister-title to Zorn, at the University of Ghent, Belgium, last month.
It was only the second time that the university gave this Magister-title, the first time for the artists Gilbert and George.
The ceremony was held in an old building of the conservatory of music in Ghent, it was quite charming, a bit like an old opera-house, but with less ornamentations.

It started with the Decan of the University giving a speech in Dutch, which I did not understand, but a friend said it was about the world being in turmoil. Zorn would later in his little speech pick up this theme.
Then a part of the speech was in English, but little about music or Zorn, so this part was a bit weird.
Zorn sat in the middle of the hall, joined by Cyro Baptista and some official people of the university.
Then there was some Film-music from Zorn, played by an ensemble of Clarinet, Violin, Harp, Guitar and Bass. Six colourful arrangements of soundtrack pieces, well done and played. The addition of harp was festive. I recognized some tunes like "Protocols of Zion" and "Shabbos Noir" and "Besos de Sangre".
Afterwards, someone told me that Zorn had asked that a belgian guitar player could arrange and play these pieces.

Then there was a nice and long eulogy on Zorn in English, by the Director. It was well delivered and gave a very good insight into the career and meaning of Zorn's music.

Then Zorn was asked to come up and they showed him "The Golden Book" of Ghent. I could not follow everything they said, but in this book were the signatures of many great persons since hundreds of years back. Zorn laughed when he saw the signature of Napoleon (for real !) and then he signed the book himself.

He was asked to say a few words and he said that indeed the world was in a dark place (dark ages) and that art and music were very important in this period and that they flourished in dark times.
Also he talked about the importance of "community" in his work, referring of course to all the people around him that he inspires and work with and for him.
Zorn received a little statue from a belgian artist. He was very friendly and cooperative and all.
Afterwards there was some more music from a Jazz trio, blending some of their music with free improvisation. Well done !
There was a reception afterwards and we saw Zorn doing an interview for a tv camera and there was a photographer taking pictures.
A lot of people were able to say a few words to Zorn.

The ceremony was filmed by the people of the university so hopefully some videos will become available soon.
Best Regards,


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