Partner projects



MUSIC UP CLOSE NETWORK – connecting orchestral music to young audiences is a multi-annual cooperation project of European orchestras and international organizations for artistic mobility, designed as an impetus for a long-term European cooperation network that will give concrete answers to the current challenges in the field of orchestral music. The project includes world-class orchestras, some of which have a strong reputation in the implementation of projects for young audiences and the cultivation of a new generation of talented musicians and other orchestral partners who need to improve their activities in reaching young people while at the same time encouraging the emergence of new orchestral works.

The project partners consider the MUSIC UP CLOSE NETWORK as a start-up organization to experiment and share new strategies and approaches to connect the orchestral music with young audiences and then broaden the network with new partners of the orchestra and other international organizations. The project aims to carry out activities that primarily respond to the following priorities:

– transnational mobility: promoting the transnational circulation of artists and professionals in 12 European countries; ordering and internationalizing new orchestral works by live composers to promote intercultural dialogue, co-production and concert tours in innovative forms with young orchestral ensembles and choirs.

– The development of the audience: experimenting and disseminating strategies for development, in particular in dealing with the Balkan countries; producing concerts for young people in innovative forms, using cross media tools to reach young and less represented audiences.

– Capacity building: training and education: strengthening professionals with competencies and knowledge for transnational activities, in particular promoting a program of exchange of work experience and promoting musical residences for orchestral training for young professional musicians.



The project Connecting through Music with Maribor International Orchestra 2012 (MIO2012) derives from the educational project International Summer Music Seminar Maribor 2009 (in our organization), where within the master class for orchestral conductors the resident symphony orchestra with international musicians was formed. This contributed to the even more lively dialogue on the evaluation of the music profession between the participants, on the exchange of experience, debates on professional musical themes, not least art in the broader sense, and about life situations in the countries of orchestra participants, on the possibilities of further education and on the possibilities of connecting and making contacts, which is of key importance for young musicians at the beginning of their professional career.

We organized the project together with co-organizers from Slovenia (Cultural Association Glasbena matica Ljubljana), Serbia (Balkan Youth Association), Macedonia (Interkultura), Czech (National Divadlo) and Great Britain (Insider Communications / Nephew London), who strive to underline the need for continuous information, targeted education and the promotion of music as an important integration factor for young people.

The project MIO2012 was encouraged and supported by the European Capital of Culture Maribor 2012, in order to continue the mission of connecting young musicians and performing music with top soloists and conductors, thus strengthening the path of achieving the highest cultural goals in our area and wider throughout Europe and the world.



The partnership project MEDINEA (MEDiterranean INcubator of Emerging Artists) is managed and founded by the Aix-en-Provence Festival. It supports the professional involvement of young Mediterranean musicians, develops intercultural projects that promote dialogue, the transfer of results and the mobility of both around the Mediterranean. The network consists of cultural organizations, the music sector, which deals with the dynamics of exchange and cooperation at the international level. It includes higher education institutions, cultural centers, festivals and music markets. Through our partnership, our organization and activities were presented to all the music academies included in the project.

OTTETTO (8 Swings for His Highness)


The ’dance concert’ OTTETTO (8 Swings for His Highness) is built around Octet, a 16-minute musical delicacy by Igor Stravinsky from 1923, a purely structural composition void of any narrative meanings, which the composer himself called “dry, cold and transparent, like an ’extra dry’ champagne”. OTTETTO by Iztok Kovač choreographically decomposes, analyses and then reconstructs and visualizes this exceptional musical work.

The author explores the octet from various angles and standpoints the extant relationships of the artists involved with this composition. The performance thus yields the responses of

the conductor,

the eight musicians,

the five dancers and

the team of visual artists.

Along with the lively joint sequences these dissimilar responses are an expansion of the anticipated execution of the original work, which now has an 8-part structure for 14 performers.

In Octet, which is scored in the classical sonata cycle form for an unusual combination of woodwind and brass instruments, Stravinsky, peculiarly, employed the technical means of baroque and classicistic music. The more contemporary harmonies and rhythmic complexity introduce an effect of Verfremdung (Alienation) to the polyphonic technique, and also herald the beginning of neoclassicism in the music history.

The movement of the dancers, the international company EnKnapGroup, is marked by a specific vocabulary derived from the analyses of parts for each individual instrument in Stravinsky’s Octet, which both emphasizes the abstract structure of the composition and renders it alien. The movement is frequently subjected to a strict periodic rhythm of the metronome, which refers to the presence of the maestro. In OTTETTO the composition can be metaphorically seen as a musical work scored for theatre (though of course this was not the case).

Octet by Stravinsky, which was received with general dismay and considered a bad joke in his time, in OTTETTO (8 Swings for His Highness) is played live on stage by the Slovenian music ensemble Academy Branimir Slokar conducted by Živa Ploj Peršuh.

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