Many friends and colleagues have asked us what the text 'The Conference of the Birds' at the Silk Road Cultural Belt actually means. It is meant very literally: We live in a time of change in many parts of life where one can get the impression that many of us live completely without any memories or gratitude for what is happening around or in the world of classical music.
As musicians we can respond to such a situation only musically & artistically. Imagine the earth before the Silk Road. Before the old and the new Silk Road. Before any Silk Road.
Any 'You' on the ground would be an expression of at least something new, something different. The place suddenly wouldn't be empty and you wouldn't be alone. Wouldn't that be a reason to acknowledge that this 'You' is an expression of something we could be grateful for ? A Ficus ?! A human being ?
Why this question ? And if the role of this 'inspiration' would be to inspire me to be grateful ? For example for a very personal source of inspiration shared at the Silk Road Cultural Belt - would I be able to acknowledge that this 'You' can inspire me with a simple expression of what his or her idea of quality is ? Would I consider this 'You' as an inspiration ? We believe gratitude has a meaning in music and is important because there is always a certain source of inspiration and a reason for a certain expression along the way - for example the idea of the Silk Road. In every Twitter and Facebook account there are so many personal Silk Roads happening every day that it is appropriate for us to call exactly this a Silk Road : The very personal understanding of love for what is happening in our personal and professional lives.
Our concert programs so far have been inspired by an increasing number of personal sources of inspiration shared at the Silk Road Cultural Belt. We included 'by the Silk of your music' in the sense that we want to be honest that we don't want to exaggerate this open question and also we respect and acknowledge that for some of us heavy metal music is an expression they feel grateful for but as an orchestra we focus on classical music we actually can play as a symphony orchestra.
Especially in the West and in Central Europe we got used to many things generations before us gave their life for based on very strong convictions and a deep need to create a civilized environment. In this sense we understand that an orchestra and quality itself is only a possibility - one of many possible forms of expression. It needs conditions many are not aware of and imagine a world before the Silk Road when we all couldn't even think of an orchestra or classical music. We want to change this qualitative conditions without changing the essence of this quality.
The Conference of the Birds shall enable changing processes to start to become stronger through a convincing expression and this way to give support for the quality of this process leading with the fact that the process itself is always full of changes. The Silk Road is a possibility - for us it is a musical process and we understand that as a part of this world we are not only performers but also audiences where a listener from Tokio, Buenos Aires, Elberfeld or Shanghai is definitively a source of inspiration because if the world would be in a position before the Silk Road it would be great to hear and to learn from every human being along the way about his or her personal idea of Silk not only in classical music.
We believe if these diverse ideas of quality would all come together then it would give a much clearer picture what we all together could call to be a Silk Road in music. Then it would be more easy to understand in a changing world what 'you' considers to be 'Bread bread' and what you would call 'Music music'.
As an orchestra we have the goal to compose the Silk Road Cultural Belt together with these best qualities in the other. We want to support our listeners to develop their own independent clarity. We believe every one of us can think independently and can develop clarity what could be called best conditions in the future. This right is not a monopole of a certain sector. This belt of inspiration - or the 'You' which inspired us to feel more grateful because of a 'Piece of Silk' freely shared at the Silk Road Cultural Belt is just a Link to the future we want to see already today.
And we believe that this real connection between real people f.e. in an orchestra like the Silk Road Symphony Orchestra in Berlin explains why we have to change all the time the setting of the orchestra, the musicians who play, the place where we play and what we play because music is an expression that everything changes all the time (Q: Why Silk ? Because of you) and we are striving for the best possible quality (Simurgh) which is possible thanks to you.
CALLIAS FOUNDATION / jmo