Principal Dancer at the Stuttgart Ballet, Friedemann Vogel shines in the most beautiful roles of the Répertoire. You just have to watch his breathtaking performances, such as in Onegin (available on DVD) to be fully convinced.
Revopera is incredibly proud to present you an interview with one of today’s most talented dancers, in which Friedemann Vogel tells us all about his musical tastes… and much more !
Photos : Youn Sik Kim
How often do you listen to music and how important is music in your life ?
Music plays a significant part in my life. But because I listen to music all the time for class, rehearsals, and performances, I don’t need to have music in the background to entertain me when I am home. I only listen to music when I am in the mood, or wish to listen to something specific with intent.
Incidentally, I have two older brothers who are professional musicians who play the clarinet and the oboe. Whenever I can, I try to attend their concerts which I really enjoy, and I can get quite emotional listening to them sometimes !
Is music omnipresent in your work or do you prefer to have working sessions without music?
It’s absolutely instrumental. Some choreographers are inclined to work without music when we have to rehearse a scene many times. But not for me. I need to hear the music to feel inspired, to get into the mood, and to channel that emotion into my movement.
What kind of listener are you: do you use streaming apps like Spotify or do you prefer CDs? Do you prefer to listen to single tracks or playlists etc. ?
I prefer playlists and use streaming apps for sure; in fact, I don’t own a CD player anymore, and am not quite sure what to do with my many CDs…
What kind of music do you listen to and who are your favourite artists ?
I listen to a wide variety of music, everything from classical to pop to contemporary music, which I find can be quite invigorating. Right now, Max Richter ranks very high on my list of favourites.
Do you like Opera ? What were your best opera experiences and who are your favourite singers or conductors ?
I love Opera ! When I was dancing at La Scala, I took the opportunity to watch La Boheme and La Traviata there. It was pretty magical – when the curtain went up, it was everything I imagined it would be watching an opera in this legendary house. A truly unforgettable experience.
Could you name musical works which you like to dance to ? And why ?
Instinctively, we think it’s easy to dance to music we love. However, I find that sometimes music takes a while to really get into your body. But when that happens, it becomes effortless and even something to cherish.
I love dancing Béjart’s Songs of a Wayfarer. Mahler’s music is so intense, and the words of the song hold so much meaning. Béjart weaved such amazing musicality between the dance and the operatic singing, it’s a total joy dancing this work each time.
If you had to choreograph a ballet, what music would you choose ?
For me, to choreograph a ballet, the choice of music has to be based on an idea or a mood. Since there are no words in dance, music becomes crucial as the means to communicate what you wish to say, and sets the emotional tone to the choreography.
When will we have the chance to see you dance in Paris or in France ?
There are no dates planned for now, and under the current exceptional circumstances which have so severely impacted our sector, it’s really hard to say… But I would certainly love to dance in Paris or elsewhere in France again!
Would you like to work with French dancers or choreographers?
Of course. I already have, and it’s always a great experience, partly because I speak French and love the culture. Hopefully, there will be another opportunity soon !