AMITAYUS-DUO

Im Herbst 2010 gründete Dr. Boelcke zusammen mit dem amerikanischen Cellisten Dr. Adam Cathcart das Amitayus-Duo.
In den knapp zwei Jahren bis zum Frühling 2012 unternahm das Duo drei mehrwöchige Konzertreisen nach China und trat mehrmals in Berlin auf, wo es die Deutschlandpremiere von Gao Pings erster Sonate für Klavier und Cello gab und am 11. September 2011 bei einer Gedenkzeremonie zu den New Yorker Anschlägen vor hochrangigen Politikern wie Gerhard Schröder, Guido Westerwelle, Christian Wulff und Walter Steinmeier konzertierte.

In China spielte das Amitayus Duo sowohl an konventionellen Orten wie dem Sichuan Konservatorium der Musik und dem Nordic International Management Institute als auch oft im Rahmen von Musical Diplomacy Events an Orten wie dem U.S. Konsulat in Chengdu (in einem Konzert mit ausschließlich russischer Musik) oder auch an der Minzu Daxue vor ethnischen Minderheiten wie Tibetern oder Angehörigen der Hui-, Miao-, Yi-, Dong-, Bai-Gruppen.

In der relativ kurzen Zeit trugen Boelcke und Cathcart viele der großen Werke für Klavier und Cello mehrmals vor, so z. Bsp. die beiden Sonaten von Brahms op. 38 und op. 99, von Schostakowitsch op. 40, von Prokofieff op. 119, Schumanns Fantasiestücke op. 73 sowie die „Fünf Stücke im Volkston“ op. 102, und machten das deutsche und chinesische Publikum mit einem Dutzend nordkoreanischer Volksmelodien in eigens arrangierter Version vertraut. 

 

Hier einige Auszüge aus dem damaligen englischsprachigen Blogs des Duos: 

July 17th 2012: Concert at the Sichuan Agricultural University

One of our most memorable performances was the one at the Agricultural University in the Sichuan Province of China. A highly-attentive crowd of mainly non musicians came to hear Western and Asian music. Approxiamtely 20 minutes before the end of our concert there was a total power outage on the entire campus, something I have neither experienced in China before nor ever since. It was pitch dark in the concert hall with us on stage and a few hundred people in the audience. After a few seconds of silence I started one of Chopin's Etudes I knew I could play blindfolded if I had to. Adam and I were moved by what happened now. As I finished the piece many people from the audience came on stage with the torches of their phones lit and circled around us, giving enough light to continue with our duo program. We were able to play two more numbers before security staff entered the hall with flashlights guiding everybody out of the dark building. After the event we were invited by Chinese local party officials to a generous dinner with plenty to eat and to drink. 

September 11th 2011: Commemoration Concert in Berlin

Ten years after the tragedy in New York, Amitayus appeared at the American Church Berlin to play Ernst Bloch's famous piece "Prayer" during a commemoration service in front of high ranking German politicians including the country's President, Christian Wulff, Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, Ex-Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, Ex-Foreign Minister Walther Steinmeier, and the US Ambassador to Germany, Philip D. Murphy. The service was well attended and all people joined in reflective prayers and meditations on the loss of that terrible day in 2001 that changed the world. 

July 29th 2011: Performance at NIMI

China is experiencing extremely drastic changes. New buildings and entire institutions are stamped out of the ground in no time. What used to be a settlement of old poverty homes can turn into a luxury hotel, in literally just a few months.
A great example of the speed and extent of these changes is Nordic International Management Institute (NIMI) in Xindu District, Chengdu. Counting only the actual construction process, it takes little more than 2 years for an entire town to emerge with shops, restaurants, apartment-, office- and classroom-buildings. NIMI is the result of collaboration amongst government and academia from China and Northern Europe. NIMI's preparation for our performance on July 29, 2011, left out no extravagance.
Solely for this event, a stage made of glass had been installed, the surrounding area filled with water enhanced with floating water lilies and a dry ice machine spiting out white fog underneath the stage to enhance the Romantic harmony of the event. There was  incidental music including a children's choir in between our three performing blocks, one each for German, Russian, Chinese Music. Here, the Amitayus Duo was heard by some 200 listeners, including Emmanuel Rousseau (French Consul General in Chengdu), members of various Sino-European business councils and exchange programs, musicians from Chengdu, as well as Chinese Communist Party officials from the Xindu district (新都区).

July 2011: Performing at the US Consulate in Chengdu, China

It was our first time playing at a governmental institution and we were not sure what to expect. There were obviously some high security measurements including a thorough check of Adam's cello, our music bags, as well as a prohibit for us to bring anything but a flash-drive and some hard copy documents including our music scores—no cell phones, no cameras or other electronic equipment. After roughly 30 minutes of waiting and going through the required security procedures we were guided by a friendly cultural attachee to a amiddle size room with about 60 chairs, a Baby grand piano, and a screen for power point projections and the like. Vize Consul Ben K. Bowman, in charge of the Consulate's cultural programs, welcomed us and expressed his enthusiasm about our coming. We performed Soviet and Chinese music interspersed into a presentation centered around the slow Chinese-American political and cultural approach in the early 1970s. To our delight a vivid discussion emerged on music and its function in diplomacy. We were excited to see that the event was not only well attended (I saw no empty chairs left) but that the audience, most of them young Chinese adults, were highly interested in the topic and the relation between the U.S. and their native China. 

October 2010: Amitayus at the Minzu Daxue

What was originally intended to be the dress rehearsal for our concert at the Sichuan Conservatory of Music turned out to be a unique experience. On October 20, 2010, we were taken to the new campus of Minzu Daxue, a University for the study of the culture and languages of China's ethnic minorities, also called Southwest University for Nationalities. After a 30 minute drive we arrived at a huge and brand new campus. The person in charge guided us into the building, up the stairs and to our surprise we found ourselves in a hall, packed with more than two hundred people, no chair left emty. The crowd was enthusiastically clapping and shouting to welcome us. We still had to set up the proper stage setting, including the music stand and bench for the cellist, and did all that while the excited audience was observing us full of curiosity not knowing what to expect from a piano-cello concert. The performance went well and as we played, especially through extended slow pianissimo sections in the Shostakowitch, the audience was so silent that one could have heard the drop of a needle. Most of these students have never seen or heard a traditional Western concert and were in awe to experience this. Teenagers and young adulats enroll at the Minzu Daxue to study the heritage of their own culture. The majority seemed to be Tibetans but there were Hui, Miao, Yi, Dong, Bai and Li people as well. Here are some pics taken during and after the concert.