Working in the field of classical composition (PhD at Royal Academy of Music in London, Masters at Lithuanian Academy of Music), Ruta has also been active initiator of experimental music projects (music visualization, acoustic surround, music personalization), organizer (2006-2013 director of Druskomanija festival and workshop series the Process in Lithuania, 2012-2017 facilitator of New Music Incubator with Martin Q Larsson in Nordic and Baltic countries, and now - across EU), performer (violin, piano, voice, electronics). Find out more about her works here


Rūta Vitkauskaitė comments:"The traineeship at BCMG had and still has very big impact on my creative practice, and especially on my understanding how contemporary music, and music in general, is perceived by various audiences: musicians, non-musicians, amateur musicians, children, young people and so on. At the time of the traineeship, and later on, the most important leaning for me was my participation in designing the workshop and delivering it. Music workshops in general, were quite a new experience in my practice at the start of the traineeship.

Below I divide my learning into two parts, and explain what impact it has on my composition practice.


Creating a workshop structure

Creating a workshop based on contemporary music piece was a fascinating process. First, understanding how the chosen contemporary music piece works, untangling it, and seeing what techniques, systems and composing logic the composer used when creating it. It is as if trying to look into composer's mind. All this material then would be reorganised and settled into structure that could be understood, and experienced, by young people. So every young person individually, taking inspiration from parts of composition processes of the composer, could create their own unique composition structures. After traineeship, I've been thinking about these processes. I delivered a few workshops to children, teenagers, and professional musicians. I started working on the idea of 'delivering composition without the piece'. It is as if I share my initial inspiration, and the logics of development that inspiration into a piece of music, and then leave to every member of the audience to walk the process themselves - meaning, experience that composition from 'inside'. It has worked the best with singing workshops on Aronia Overture - a transdisciplinary collaboration between a scientist, and an instrument builder.


The model of the workshop

The model used at BCMG learning workshops, by different workshop leaders, was sharing some basic rules: work individually, work in small groups and whole group activity. Besides the many advantages this model has for learning processes, it also mirrors one of the main streams of music and art creation - collaborative music making. What it really means is that the ownership of the final piece belongs to the whole group. This is something absolutely against the image of the classical composer, and the image that many academic institutions create. But collaboration is one of the most successful music creation models - being practiced in electronic, pop music, sound art, performance art, interdisciplinary music projects, and pre-classical music making in folklore. Being a classical music composer, I practice collaboration a lot. I use the models of collaborating I learned. They diminish composer's ego and the role of controller, and create much more natural, although thoroughly thought through, environment of music unfolding."

© Rūta Vitkauskaitė


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