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26th International ESTA Congress in Trieste/Italy, 12 – 17 September, 1998

One of the reasons for the choice of this venue was to make it easier for Slovenia, the most recent member country with its President Ciril Skerjanec, to participate. Charmingly located at the sea and rich in beauty, culture and history, the city of Trieste provided an ideal backdrop at the intersection of the two countries. Renato Zanettovich, President of the Italian Branch of ESTA, had prepared the programme:

Enzo Porta, Italy The Italian School from the 19th Century until Today
Guiseppe Placentino, Italy On the Definition of Locatelli’s Virtuosity– the Roman Documents 1714-1723
Sabina Moretti, Italy Suggestions on Didactics at the Conservatories of Central and Southern Italy
Terje Moe Hansen, Norway A New Approach to Virtuosity on the Violin
Gerhard Mantel, Germany Sound Motions
Peter de Leeuw, Netherlands Instruction on String Instruments for Very Young Children
Jochen Brusch, Germany The World of Kreisler
Antonio Pellegrini, Switzerland Beethoven, Kreutzer and the French Revolution
Primoz Kuret, Slovenia Slovenian Music – an Unknown Part of European Culture
Rok Klopcic, Slovenia Fundamental Training and Education for the Development of an Artist

We had the pleasure of listening to many beautiful concerts: Igor Coretti, who had begun preparations for his “Young Musicians International Orchestra” project already at the 1988 Congress in Rome, played music with children from Austria, Hungary, Slovenia and Italy with works by Gluck and Sorkocevic and had individual children tell about their work in up to three languages. Winners of ESTA’s youth competitions in Italy furnished proof of their outstanding skills, virtuosity even, in some cases. Students of the international Scuola Superiore di Musica da Camera del Trio di Trieste, Valentino Dentesani, violin, and Andrea Ambrosini, piano gave a demonstration of their great musical talent and bowing technique rendering Beethoven and Brahms sonatas. Accompanied by the Friuli Venetia-Julia Chamber Orchestra, the little cellist Stefano Cerrato played pieces by Bloch and Nölk. Selected pupils demonstrated their abilities with works by Tchaikovsky and Bloch.

Finally, musical humour, organised by Janet Zadow, Italy, was also given its due: Vivaldi’s Concerto grosso with built-in etudes by Kreutzer and Rode, with ESTA members joining in, and a choir ESTA GLORIA ESTA.

General Meeting of the Delegates on 15 September, 1998, in Trieste

Siegfried Palm opened the Meeting with a minute’s silence in commemoration of the Belgian ESTA President, Leo Praet, who had passed away. From the Central Secretariat it was reported that Elspeth Iliff had represented ESTA at the IMC meeting in Rome and attended several meetings in Paris to reactivate ESTA France and to prepare an opening day at the Conservatoire of Paris. Contacts with other string organisations in the world, such as ASTA, AUSTA and STANZA, were maintained by Elspeth Iliffth. They all had been invited to the Meeting, but time had been too short for travel arrangements this time. Hopes were expressed that participation and concrete, joint initiatives would be possible in the next years.

The secretariats were asked to specify on their membership lists also the instruments for more precise data acquisition.

In the Treasurer’s report mention was made again of the difference which had arisen because of the time span between production costs for the INL and the receipt of payment from advertisers as well as membership fees still due. The budget showed no deficit. The travelling expenses for the members of the Central Committee were reimbursed. As regards the contribution to IMC, it was proposed to share it with other string teachers’ associations. However, Siegfried Palm stressed that ESTA, in any case, remain a member of IMC. Asked by Rachel Goldberg about the merit of this membership, Werner Schmitt explained that it earned ESTA the status of an NGO, Non Governmental Organisation, with the Council of Europe. Considering that there were only three NGOs dealing with music, it was important that music education have a voice as well.

The delegation of Slovenia was welcomed and Slovenia was admitted unanimously to ESTA as the 25th member country. Mr. Frendo from Malta was welcomed as a guest and potential new member. Siegfried Palm said that he would continue fostering contacts with other string teachers’ organisations during courses in New Zealand in 2000.

The next International Congress in Portsmouth 1999 was discussed. Kjell Hamren remarked critically that contributions came almost exclusively from Great Britain. The programme included, among others, the world première of a piece by Sir Rodney Bennett.

The Congresses 2000 in Odessa and 2002 in Denmark were discussed, with the Danish Branch celebrating its 20th anniversary on this occasion.

Kjell Hamren reported about the three years of his editorship of the INL. Financing it was still a problem. After a lot of support in the first years, costs ranged at ₤ 10,000 in the second year. In the third year each country was requested to procure one advertisement as otherwise Hamren did not see a way how to cope with the additional work load. Ann Inglis, editor of the British ESTA journal “News and Views”, volunteered to review the next edition of the INL.

Copies of the new rules and regulations of the Koch Foundation were distributed for consultation. The ultimate decision was up to the Central Committee and the Branches were asked to submit their proposals to the Central Secretariat.

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