Music, sounds, words, performances: Maria tells us
Hi Maria, welcome to my blog. Would you like to tell us about this new project called Rovèran and how does it compare with your current job as an actress, performer and musician?
Hi Joe, so this project was born from the need to bring to light the mature fruit of a path that originates in acting and which immediately manifested itself also on a musical level. So I started acting, and starting from my first film a musical collaboration was born with the director of the film itself .. I realized that these two languages express in a complementary way moods, concepts and emotions in a rich and absolutely essential way. ‘from each other. Over the years this osmotic game between acting and therefore the visual side, and writing for singing, has increasingly confirmed itself.
How did we start collaborating?
I started collaborating with you Joe on various fronts and also on a linguistic level in ad hoc projects: We also worked from a cinematographic point of view, collaborating for example in the film Effetto Domino by Alessandro Rossetto, presented at the Venice Film Festival, but also at the level of theatrical with a concept soundtrack created for a new show by Marco Paolini.
What gives birth to the Rovéran project?
Rovèran was born from the desire to let the languages of music and visual speak, through their orchestration, so as to be able to create a unicum that can amplify the message I want to bring. It is a message that has to do with the sense of fullness that I find in the emotions of contact: with the characters I play, with the body, with the music and the sound expression. With this mood I involved you, Joe, in continuing to work in a more experimental way in this project, because I finally feel it is the real expression of a path started a few years ago, and which today takes a form that we are defining, however still evolving, which sees the image and the music together, to express a performative act.
There is a lot of talk about experimentation, how do you conceive it in this project?
I believe that we are not experimenting as an end in itself, but something that communicates a greater universality … this is the direction that interests me. While I used to write alone and arrive in the studio with ready-made “songs”, now I happen to write just as we are working together and I do it by letting myself be inspired by the notes, chords and melodies that you, Joe, compose and the textures that you propose to me. It happened to start with a text and then grasp a different thematic need from the melodic trend of your composition and therefore I find a greater possibility of investigation in writing, greater freedom and a different way of listening.
Music and sounds, which are also intended for the image, are born before or after it?
This is an important issue. In reality, together with Furio Ganz, the video artist in the Rovèran project, with you and also with Matthew S, producer and sound designer, we have approached both possibilities: both an image that comes first, and the other way around, starting from a song produced in the studio, then working on a performative and visual level with Furio, having the song already produced. The approach is obviously different. What intrigued me immediately was starting from the image. I tried to think of an interdependence between video and music, and what I can do, working in the studio with you is to be able to read the image and interpret it through a gaze that also becomes hearing, that also becomes ear, up to the moment in which I can interpret the image and give it a voice. This is what I find interesting to do when we are in the studio! And that’s what we’re doing for the next visual-sound-musical projects.
Our collaboration, what is your vision?
Well … first of all, a few words about how our artistic and creative relationship was born …
Joe Schievano is also that guitarist, who comes out on stage at a certain point and you don’t know who he is … in the beginning it was just like that Joe! Because I was on the stage of the Sherwood Festival and you went on stage to replace a guitarist … I turned around to see you, I shook your hand and … I didn’t even know who you were! … We started playing together so, without knowing each other at all and immediately in front of the warm public of Sherwood. It was very emotional … a great evening!
However, an artistic collaboration was born from there. As far as I am concerned, for my collaborations, I always prefer to choose on two levels: I prefer people who I not only consider obviously competent, smart and capable, but also with creative skills on several levels. Even on the human level.
So I am not satisfied with pure “know-how”: what excites me in creating an artistic partnership like ours is also looking for a type of humanity and personality that can help in pushing us to research, try and experiment together, allowing us to always remain open to news and possible changes.
I give it back to my collaborators the texts I write and the creative inputs I perceive and this becomes a creative game that at a certain point feeds itself in a mutual relational way. The thing that fascinates me most in our work together, Joe, is that there are never moments of breathlessness or heaviness because even the critical moments become creative moments. This is the most beautiful experience for me linked to the work I do in the studio with you. And this also allowed me to “come out into the open”, to clarify all my artistic intentions, my visions, my perplexities and doubts, without being ashamed, but trying to find a viable path together.
In my opinion it is thanks to our way of working that today we can look forward with very personal and at the same time universal projects.
I think very bold.
Do you feel you give a different value between your being an actress and a singer?
What interests me is to concentrate on getting my sight and my personal perception of everything to arrive, however, working on concepts that I consider universal and I am interested in doing it through both the language of staging and acting and the music itself. different expressive languages and in the power of their orchestration: I believe that, by making them live in a complementary and harmonious way, the message conveyed arrives with greater intensity and better completeness.
Initially you come from a writing referred to the song form, then slowly you started to evolve towards different musical forms, so this would be the address of the new project, what do you think of this evolution and how do you see it continue in the way of writing?
I started, as we said, already from Piccola Patria, with a very songwriting style writing, starting even from my native language which is the dialectal language. So, from the Venetian dialect, I later started writing in Italian by writing texts, always with a well-defined structure. This writing has also materialized through my cinematographic experiences, working on the set and observing what happens there and having the good fortune to work with various artists, even in the theater, listening to the work of the orchestra in the Threepenny Opera, a piece by which I was an interpreter. In short, in my cinematographic and theatrical career I developed a sense of writing which then slowly changed over time.
Now, with the Rovéran project we are arriving at a new conception and method of writing that seeks to break free from the formalism of the canonical structure. From metrics, for example, which was usually my custom, we arrive at a use of the echo of the word, which is no longer only the bearer of a message but also of a sound. What fascinates me is how words can convey emotions, even simply because of their sound. This does not mean going to texts that have no meaning, but leaving a greater breath to the listener with the intention of giving greater possibility of interpretation and fruition. This is my goal and this also allows me to seek and communicate greater freedom.