So please, if you have anything that you would like to say publicly about Clara Rockmore, her creativity and her works, – please write.
The first time I saw Clara Rockmore was in a documentary called “Theremin: An electronic odyssey” in the late 90’s. I was very impressed by her performance and stylish look, her hands delicately making music without touching anything. I was so astonished that I kept thinking about it for several days. Playing the Theremin gave her a unique and honest elegance.
What prompted you to play theremin?
What motivated me to play the Theremin was its uniqueness. It is such a fascinating instrument and so little is known in the world about it. There are still people who see it live and do not understand or imagine how it works. It is such an amazing feeling to touch the air and produce tunes. It was a true discovery. At first it was difficult to approach it but then for me it became a deep friendship. It was and it will always be an old instrument which is always new.
What were your first feelings when you heard the sounds of theremin and where did it happen? What were your first feelings when you heard the sounds of theremin and where did it happen?
What I felt for the first time was to remember the old movies of suspense, horror, SCIFI. I surely heard it played before knowing what it was. When I discovered and identified the sound, I investigated the SCiFI movies they had recorded in their soundtracks. The one that impressed me most was The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) by Robert Wise.
What is your musical philosophy and what place it occupies a theremin? What is your musical philosophy and what place it occupies a theremin?
My philosophy is to combine the old with the new and innovate. You cannot ignore all the good that has been done. I think it is important for a musician to research the past. It is also crucial to understand what my responsibility is as a musician in the world and what my contribution to music is now. If I am able to measure the responsibility of presenting an innovative project, it is knowing that you are doing things well. There is magic in music, the purpose is to discover that magic, connect with it, drive it and the result could impress you.
Prospects for theremin and its place in modern music space – how you see them? For what qualities you value this instrument?
I think that electromagnetism will be a fundamental tool to make electronic music in the future. The musical technology is evolving; Theremin is already a part of it. There are already Theremin with Circuit Voltage that can maximize the performance of synthesizers and analog, digital devices. On the other hand, Theremin fits perfectly well in pop, rock, rockabilly, surf and ambient music, etc. 6. Which manufacturer of theremin do you prefer? I’ve been using almost a decade theremin moog etherway. The theremin market is very limited in South America. There are very few manufacturers. If I could try another one I would be very happy.
What you can recommend for beginners thereminists, or those who are just going to start their way of thereminist?
First of all, if there really is interest in learning to play it as an instrument, you must choose the right theremin. Then you should work the position of your body, hands, fingers. Start a series of fingering exercises, such as the general posture and the position of the hands, fingers. You need to understand how to tune the sound and control the pitch. You should observe a lot, the interpreters who handle the technique well practice on a regular basis. Lydia Kavina has a very precise technique. I had my first classes in Barcelona with Victor Estrada. He explained to me how Theremin is tuned, the postures and techniques. He also gave me a method to play theremin that he developed and is available on the web. I encourage people to play the Theremin, they will feel a great satisfaction in playing this fascinating instrument.