“We wanted to make music, even beyond the boundaries of music itself”. Amidst the pandemic, the internationally acclaimed pianist and composer George-Emmanuel Lazaridis went out of his way, with a little help from a group of trusted collaborators, to conceive, organize and put into force an internationally-oriented and radical online educational program, addressed to the young musicians of the 21st century.
Make MusiCoviT was a self-inspired project that sprang out from the pandemic and started to take shape following Lazaridis’ reaching out to the renowned New-York based pianist, Maria Asteriadou, who was the one to bring him in contact with Chinese entrepreneur Jennifer B. Dong. “A valuable supporter,” as he explains, who took on co-producing and financing this educational program.
“It was a risky dive into uncharted waters,” Lazaridis recalls. Starting from June 1st 2020 and all the way to the premiere’s eve, on September 20th 2020, everyone involved was caught up in a state of “creative panic”. Young musicians from around the globe, “youngsters with zeal and passion for music”, were invited to take part in the program that aims at putting together education, artistic creation and innovation. “It was the answer to our need to feel close to one another, keep music’s flame alive, as all of a sudden all its survival techniques, which had been going on for centuries, went down the drain.”
The online and internationally-oriented educational program, attended by 20 young musicians from around the world (China, USA, Japan, Australia, Canada, and Europe), aged from 8 to 18 years old, and centered around musical composition, execution, and production, was conceived and carried out by George-Emmanuel Lazaridis, along with El Sistema Greece’s pianist, maestro, and head musician, Safira Antzus-Ramos. “Alongside these youngsters, we achieved something nearly unprecedented,” explains Mr. Lazaridis: the joint conception, composition, sound-recording, video-recording and execution of an original musical play, as well as the online performance of a virtual reality concert, in the form of chamber music ensembles.
Make MusiCoviT had its premiere, in the form of both a documentary and a virtual reality concert on YouTube, on September 20th, while the video will remain uploaded and available.
Mr. Lazaridis places emphasis on “the program’s countless evolution possibilities,” as he goes on to explain that the 21st century musician has no option but to make use of the innumerable technological tools of our times.
George-Emmanuel Lazaridis: Who is Who
Thirty years of incessant presence at the international music scene as a soloist, a composer and head of educational programs. He served as the artistic director of Thessaloniki Concert Hall (2010-2018), where he played a leading part in the creation of important institutions such the MOYSA Youth Symphony Orchestra and the international festival of children’s and youth choruses