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25th International ESTA Congress in San Lorenzo de El Escorial/Spain, 1 – 6 April 1997

In a former monastery, opposite the Escorial of Felipe IInd, ESTA was received for the first time by colleagues of the Spanish Branch. The brisk spring air in the mountains above Madrid stimulated the participants, as did the warm hospitality and the splendid food. In our work we focussed on Spanish music in general and music for string players in particular. Many contemporary composers were present themselves. The second area of special interest was the tradition and performance of Flamenco.


José Miguel Évora, Spanien E Flamenco-Workshop
José Luis Turina, E Works for Stings
Jaap Schröder, NL Seminar
John White, GB English Viola players
Ramón Barce, E Works for Strings
Caroline Bosanquet, GB Flageolets on the Cello
Enrique Jiménez, E The Galician Violinist Manuel Quiroga
Dimitri Kolbin, Ukraine Famous Spanish Musicians in Lvov
Tomás Marco, E Works for Strings
Alvaro Marias, E The Music School “Reina Sofia”
Dr. Ropers, D Nowo Balance – Therapy
Felix Grande, E Garcia Lorca and Flamenco
Cristobal Halffter, E Works for Strings
Antonio Gallego, E The History of Music Education in Spain
Yehudi Menuhin, GB On the Training and Education of String Players
Raimo Sariola, Finland Pedagogical Education of String-Players at the Sibelius Academy
Antonio Iglesias, E Joaquin Rodigro’s Music for Strings
Roberta Guaspari-Tzavaras Video Presentation of the “Fiddle Festival” in New York

General Meeting of the Delegates on 4 April, 1997, in San Lorenzo de El Escorial.

After words of welcome and thanks to the Spanish Branch for hosting this year’s Congress by Prof. Siegfried Palm, Lord Menuhin, in turn, thanked the latter for his commitment to ESTA and to contemporary music.

There followed a report of activities by the Central Secretariat. A membership list of members was advertised for sale. The editors of the various ESTA publications were asked to pass on information of international interest to the Central Secretariat.

Treasurer Werner Schmitt presented the financial statements. Only 11 of the currently 24 member countries had paid their membership fees. France had to suspend its activities temporarily due to financial difficulties, nothing had been heard from the Czech Republic since the Branch had been divided. The same was true of Russia. So-called “stand-by” solutions were discussed and adopted by unanimous vote. John White, representative of the International Viola Society, suggested to intensify co-operation between this organisation and ESTA.

The current financial statements were not complete, which was partly due to the delay in the publication of the INL, as Kjell Hamren explained. This incompleteness was also subjected to a vote and accepted unanimously.

The Swiss members had collected more than 2000 SFR for the Solidarity Fund. The different levels of membership fee in the east and west were discussed as well, and the 10% higher contributions to be paid by the western countries were accepted after a vote.

Werner Schmitt reported that the budget had remained more or less unchanged compared to the last years. Contributions to UNESCO and the Council of Europe had risen. The next International Congresses in Trieste 1998, Portsmouth 1999 and Denmark 2002 were discussed as was the distribution of the various ESTA publications to all presidents, secretariats and editors. Kjell Hamren concluded by saying that he considered this to be necessary.

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