Enrico Minaglia

composer, conductor, arranger 

Kuva: Jussi Virkkumaa

During his residency, Italian composer, conductor and arranger Enrico Minaglia is working on Thin Ice, his new piece for solo flute (Finnish pitkähuilu and classical C flute), live electronics and fixed media. The main concept behind this piece is the idea of skating on thin ice as a metaphor of today’s western way of life, values and society.

“In the liquid society (as described by Zygmunt Bauman), life circumstances are changing so rapidly, that the individuals cannot adapt to them, and everything becomes precarious: knowledge, job, love. Liquid life is also founded on consumption: once deprived of their true historical identity, through forced mass migrations and life in non-places and nowhere cities, the individuals are pushed to desperately consume goods. These goods are being marketed to them no more as goods in themselves, but as fragments of a long-lost identity: this kind of consumption won’t produce satisfaction, but just the creation of further needs, first of all the need to be up-to-date in everything, getting constantly rid of the obsolete elements. Like skaters on thin ice, the members of liquid society know only one survival strategy: to keep running as fast as they can, or else they are going to fall and drown in the freezing water,” Enrico explains.

He is recording a vast palette of ice sounds: all that hissing, bubbling and crackling that an ice mass emits, as it reaches the melting point. After that the samples will be electronically processed and transformed into an orchestra of icy/glassy/eerie musical instruments. “After this, I’m going to study the pitkähuilu playing technique, and build a live sound processing system that is suitable both for the instrument and for the project. Then I’ll start composing the piece, every now and then getting back to process some other ice sounds, or to make some changes in the live system for the flutes,” Enrico describes.

I was born in Bologna and I live in Roma. I graduated in composition (Conservatorio di Milano), conducting (Conservatorio dell’Aquila) and philosophy (Università“La Sapienza”, Roma). My composition teachers have been Alessandro Sbordoni, Fabio Vacchi and Alessandro Solbiati at the Conservatory; and Detlev Glanert, Brice Pauset, Joshua Feinberg, Azio Corghi, Michelangelo Lupone, Alvise Vidolin, Luis Bacalov and Ennio Morricone in various other masterclasses I have attended.

Since 2002 I’ve been working as a composer for short films, documentaries, theatre plays, video-art and art exhibitions. In the last 10 years I’ve also been working as an arranger, conductor and orchestrator on several TV/movies/theatre soundtrack productions of the major italian broadcasters and theatres. At the same time I’ve also been hired as an arranger by the publisher Ricordi: I’ve made orchestral reductions of several famous italian operas that are being hired out to small theatres throughout the world. In 2016, with a piece for orchestra, I won the Kompolize Composition Competition in Berlin; in 2019 I with a piece for ensemble I won the 3rd prize at the Franz Josef Reinl Composition Competition of Vienna; I’m currently among the finalists at the 40th Composition Contest “Premio Valentino Bucchi” in Rome.