Meredith Monk: Always with a beginner’s mind
Still fresh from her latest musical work in collaboration with the group Bang On A Can, Meredith Monk, one of the great references of multidisciplinary work in the field of creation, talks with Miguel Oyarzun about the importance of open forms of work, collaborative processes and the social function of art in a society in transformation.
Meredith Monk, composer, singer, choreographer, and pioneer of “extended vocal technique” and interdisciplinary performance.
Miguel Oyarzun, creation, organisation and management of international festivals.
Meredith Monk is a composer, singer, director, choreographer, filmmaker, and creator of contemporary opera, musical theatre works, films, and installations. Recognised as one of the most unique and influential artists of our time, she is a pioneer in what is known as ‘extended vocal technique’ and ‘interdisciplinary performance’. Over the past six decades, Monk has received numerous awards and accolades, including a MacArthur Fellowship and the Order of Officier des Arts et des Lettres of the French Republic. Monk recently received three of the highest honours bestowed on a living artist in the United States: induction into the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2019, the Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize in 2017 and 2015 the National Medal of Arts from President Barack Obama. In conjunction with her fifteenth season performing and creating her works, she was named Debs Composer Chair at Carnegie Hall 2014-15. Celebrated worldwide, Meredith Monk’s work has been performed on major stages around the world.
Since 2010, Miguel Oyarzun has collaborated in the creation, organisation and management of international festivals, worked with the public administration at local, national and international level and carried out several community and proximity projects. In 2010, together with Isla Aguilar, he founded BE FESTIVAL (Birmingham European Festival), an annual European festival of performing and visual arts in Birmingham, which they have directed and programmed for 10 years, positioning it as an international benchmark. Recently, they co-directed the Centro Cultural Conde Duque in Madrid and are currently co-directing the extraordinary edition of the Festival Iberoamericano de Teatro, FIT in Cádiz 2020.
With his theatre company, Mirage, Miguel has directed and written more than ten plays. His acting career includes plays, series and films. He graduated in Textual Interpretation from Madrid’s RESAD and, after his time at the London International School of Performing Arts (LISPA), he took a postgraduate degree in Performing Arts Leadership at the Royal Northern College of Music.