“If you put all your love and passion in what you do and your activity as musician is your priority, then you can do a career. For sure. Just believe on it.”
We know that in Italy there is a huge source of wonderful flutists, and some of them have been on this blog, like Paolo Taballione or Silvia Careddu. But there are much more, and there is a great flutist that I have the big pleasure to have on this occasion on my blog.
He is Andrea Oliva, principal flute at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia Orchestra in Rome and international soloist, as well as teacher in some conservatories in Italy. To sume, a flutist that doesn’t stops due to his big quality.
I hope you like this interesting and funny interview!
And if you like it, share it on the social media! 🙂
- How did you begin in music?
I began at the age of 6 with all the “flauti dolci” family (block Flöten), thanks to a private teacher paid from our family in my primary school. In Italy, the public school doesn’t pay the music instruction, except 3 years from 11 to 14 years old students. Then I started piano lessons (for 2 years at conservatory in Modena) and singing in a white voice choir (knaben chor). After that, I just studied flauto dolce for 3 years, until 14 years old. Then I wanted to do music again in the conservatory but…to sing! Yes, I wanted to be a tenor (I come from Modena, like Pavarotti 😉). I was too young for that, so I started at the age of 14 with traverso flute waiting the age when I could be able to sing… Never came that day! Too felt in love with the flute! Today I’m very happy about that choice.
- What’s the most curious thing that has happened to you in your career as musician?
Probably when, during a concert playing with a pianist, I almost fell down because of a strange movement I did with the feet. 😂
- You combine your work in the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia with concerts as soloist and chamber music. What provide that to you and how do you combine it?
I’m happy because my orchestral job is not a full job. We are 2 principal flutists in “Accademia nazionale Santa Cecilia” Orchestra, so we can divide the season 50% each. In the free weeks I organize my chamber or soloist music life, plus I put my lessons. I’m teaching “high perfection courses” in 4 Italian Academies regularly, and I have my regular class in Conservatorio in Lugano… I need free weeks from the orchestra!
- As you say, you teach in the Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana in Lugano. What do you try to transmit to your students?
My main teaching activity is in Lugano, at Conservatorio CSI. I teach there to 10/13 Bachelor students (20% of the class) and Master students.
I try to transmit all my passion about music and flute practicing, suggesting to the them the studies and activities that helped me during my age of study. And also what they should listen as “ideal music model”, like I did when I was young.
I ask them to practice a lot, but also with the best quality, so they can obtain as soon as possible all their musical goals.
- You have bonds with the great Sir James Galway. What can you say about him? What do you learn from him?
He is the Master of the Masters. He concentrate in one person the best you can obtain with the flute and the career, being also a great person. From him, mainly, I learn how to concentrate and optimize the practicing to obtain the best in my performance. And he is always an inspiration for me about the quality and the vitality of the sound. He often says that each sound produced from the flute must be music. I think it is a strong message for everyone. Still today I send to his masterclasses a lot of my students to learn from my main inspiration.
- How do you see the current musical outlook?
I think the level of the flutists now is very high. There are very good young musicians, and the importance of the flute in the regular music season is always more. I’m happy about that.
- And finally, some advice for our readers.
Advice? Practice, practice, practice! If you put all your love and passion in what you do and your activity as musician is your priority, then you can do a career. For sure. Just believe on it.