Robert Abrams: What is your role in the show?
Daniel Yvinec: I'm the artistic director of the band .
RA: Please describe the performance you will present at PIFA.
DY: We're going to play a brand new program that has been written by the great John Hollenbeck. I came up with the idea of having ten small concertos tailor made for each member of the band . This band is very special, a combination of 10 very unique individuals, coming from different backgrounds, from Jazz to electronica to pop and contemporary music … The idea was to feature each of them in a small concerto. It made John and I think about forms, composition inspired by classical music forms etc.
It's also about dance, motion, every kind of dance (the one in your head too … ) , it's about what make us move …
The collaboration with John Hollenbeck was very special. He is very excited about this project and keeps following what's going on with it. (We actually will do a double bill with his large ensemble at "Le Poisson Rouge " in NYC and will go in a studio the next day to do a session with the orchestra and some members of John's band and other New Yorkers for a day of improvised music that I will conduct.
RA: In your art that you are presenting at PIFA, what is unexpected?
DY: I hope many things, the writing, the project, the musicians, what will go on between them, the audience reaction… Everything in Jazz should be unexpected …
RA: What is "new" about the art you are presenting at PIFA?
DY: It's always difficult to say what's new in what you're doing. Most of the time, the listeners (audience, journalists, friends, enemies) know more about what we do than ourselves …
Anyway, I'm pretty sure that most of the people who do something new in art don't pretend or don't try to … If you try to do something new, it might end up being a bad receipe …
RA: If audience members were seeing your PIFA show for the second time, what should they pay special attention to in order to enhance their appreciation of your art?
This question would require a long answer but in general I'd say that the best state to be in when listening to this music is opened like a child's mind … Ready to go anywhere, like when you go to a movie, you're ready to believe anything, laugh, cry … Even if there are puppets on the screen …
RA: Does your art have an activist message?
DY: Every art does …
RA: What message are you trying to communicate?
DY: Offer some beauty to the people, offer the audience a trip to some places they did not expect to visit, expand their curiosity, openness, conscience even…
RA: Do you work with schools or children?
DY: Yes we do, I love to do this, I think part of Jazz's future is about educating younger people, opening their mind, the jazzers are getting older …
RA: Please describe your educational work.
DY: Many many many many things ….
I strongly believe that jazz has some kind of problem with it's own image somehow, I think we have, as musicians the responsability to make people understand that we play, write … this music for them, that we want to bring them joy and many other things …There are many things that can be done to achieve this.
To purchase a ticket to this show, go to www.pifa.org/events/980193154
To purchase tickets to all PIFA dance events, go to www.pifa.org/events?bucket_id=1
For more information about Orchestre National De Jazz, go to www.onj.org
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Photo © & courtesy of Annabelle Tiaffay