Artistic and cultural projects
Besides his concert activity, Roberto Prosseda frequently serves as artistic advisor, creating innovative cultural projects. He is one of the most active musicians in the promotion of new music. In 2006 he commissioned several composers, including Carlo Boccadoro, Nicola Campogrande, Paolo Castaldi, Aldo Clementi, Luca Lombardi, Marcello Panni, Alessandro Solbiati, Gabrio Taglietti, and Roberta Vacca, to write new piano compositions based on unpublished fragments by Mendelssohn. He also commissioned the reconstructions of some of Mendelssohn's unfinished works, like the Piano Concerto No. 3, completed in 2006 by Marcello Bufalini and performed more than 50 times with several top orchestras (London Philharmonic, Gewandhaus, Residentie Orkest, Santa Cecilia). In 2012, after his debut at the pedal piano, Prosseda commissioned and performed many new compositions for pedal piano, written for him by Michael Bakrnčev, Nimrod Borenstein, Nicola Campogrande, Cristian Carrara, Giuseppe Lupis, Ennio Morricone, and Michael Glenn Williams. Since 1997, Roberto Prosseda has collaborated with the Festival Pontino in Sermoneta as artistic advisor, also conceiving new formats, like the Concerti d'Inverno in 2006 and 2007, the Mendelssohniana project within the Festival Pontino 2009 and the round tables and concerts about "Musical Restoration" in 2010. In 2006 Prosseda planned and realized the "Mendelssohn Discovery Tour", a cycle of recitals in important European concert halls (including the Berlin Philharmonie, Leipzig Gewandhaus and London Wigmore Hall), presenting more than 20 World Premieres of unpublished works by Felix Mendelssohn. In 2008 he was the co-founder, with Maurizio Cantore, of "Donatori di Musica", a series of particular concert seasons in Italian hospitals, based on an idea by Gian Andrea Lodovici. Donatori di Musica is currently active in many Italian hospitals. The history of this project is narrated in the book "Donatori di Musica" (Curci editore, 2015). In 2009 Roberto Prosseda founded the Associazione Mendelssohn (www.associazionemendelssohn.it), of which he is currently president and artistic director. Associazione Mendelssohn realized seven CD productions for Decca dedicated to Mendelssohn's music and co-produced the documentary "Mendelssohn Unknown", in collaboration with Rai Educational, now released on DVD by Euroarts. In 2012 he conceived the innovative format "Robot Pianist Vs. Human Pianist", with the robot pianist TeoTronico, to help the audience to acquire a more conscious and perceptive listening. More than 20 shows have been staged, also at the Berlin Philharmonie, the Ankara Festival and in two sold-out concerts at the Beijing Concert Hall and at the Kinghai Symphony Hall in Guangzhou. In 2014 Prosseda conceived the "Ghost Concert", presented as the opening event of the Pianocity Festival in Naples. In this multimedia show, Sergej Rachmaninoff appears on stage as a ghost, giving a piano recital, based on his own piano rolls, played "live" on a Yamaha Disklavier piano, synchronized with Rachmaninoff's moving image. Prosseda also conceived and produced "iMendelssohn", realized by Ubyweb&Multimedia. It is the first app for iPhone and Android dedicated to Felix Mendelssohn, providing a full list of his works, a wide bigliography and discography, several letters and original manuscripts and a comprehensive media section. Since 2014 Roberto Prosseda is artistic advisor at Cremona Mondomusica and Cremona Pianoforte International Exhibitions and since 2018 he has been appointed artistic coordinator.
Donatori di Musica's concerts are not only cultural events. The patients often not recognizable by volunteers and relatives, the intense and experienced musicality of artists, the ovations coming from the heart and from the most paralysing shadows of cancer patients to thank the “external world” that came close to them to bring Music, to bring Life, cannot fail to strike the large target of emotionality, involvement, the importance of being there.
This was the dream of Gian Andrea Lodovici, renowned musical critic and record producer: a dream born when Gian Andrea started his last journey, the one into illness at the Oncology unit in Carrara. That, in August 2007, was the starting point of this slow, but also embarrassing in its simplicity and continuity, revolution: eight regular concert seasons, every Wednesday at 19:00, fourth floor. More than 70 concerts with high level musicians. Music not only perceived as an event, but also present with continuity: the happening turns into “system”.
The purpose of Donors of Music is to make this dream come true in other Oncologies, in other hospitals and medical institutions, thanks to the extraordinary and enthusiastic generosity of hundreds of musicians who already expressed their availability.
Features of "Donatori di Musica" concerts are:
– Continuity. Concerts are always part of regular and continuous seasons.
– Quality. Concerts are executed by musicians with consolidated concert performance experience in order to assure the same quality standard as “normal” mportant concert seasons.
– Empathy. The concert performers are not dressed in formal suits and usually converse with the audience, introducing pieces and selecting a programme accessible to all. It includes a convivial break after the concert so that patients can dialogue with and meet the musicians personally, with a view to breaking down barriers and distinctions between the “sick” and “healthy”, between “doctor” and “patient”.
– No profit. Musicians perform free of charge (only accommodation for one night and travel expenses are refunded). All concerts are free and limited to patients, their relatives and hospital staff in order not to interfere with conventional concert seasons.
Everybody can be a Donor of Music by filling in the application form, specifying the title:
- Musician with concert performance experience
- Doctor in a position to host one season of “Donors of Music” in the medical institution where he/she works
- Volunteer dealing with the logistic organization of concerts: this includes hoteliers, drivers, restaurateurs, printers, piano suppliers and tuners
- Sponsor willing to donate (financial aid or material goods) to support “Donors of Music”