Manuel Contreras Vazques


My work at the Saari Residence is an attempt to systematization of previous experiences about relationships between different artistic languages and fields, starting in-and-through music composition. The project takes inspiration from the geographical movement, physical places and weathers, belonging axes, biographical aspects, disoriented journeys and unstable coordinates that Immigration represents, looking for potential seeds that could be transfigured by a transdisciplinary creative process.

The resulting compositions involve the completion of a new Chamber Opera, as well as a new short scene of Contemporary Musical Theatre; both will be premiered during 2016.

Nevertheless, beyond the resulting works or its presentation in concerts, the most important working key during the residence is about process.
The useful answers and the projections or outcomes for the future, either respect to my own artistic trajectory, as well as for possible contributions to the educational and cultural development of countries like Chile, could be founded by new perspectives of the production techniques, abstraction and relations between and through theoretical and practical issues.

Therefore, the project is not looking for a result, but rather than this: new roads and bridges. For the same reasons, a fundamental topic of the proposal is the interaction with other artist and disciplines, knowing and sharing their own strategies and approaches in order to looking for common aspects for interdisciplinary artistic creation.


He studied composition at the Universidad Católica de Chile with Alejandro Guarello and Pablo Aranda (1998-2002), at the Conservatorio di Milano with Alessandro Solbiati and Gabriele Manca (2006-2009), and at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia with Ivan Fedele (Rome, 2008-2010).

His works have been included on CD and DVD edited by Chilean Government, Emu Films productions, San Fedele Foundation and the Fund for the Development of National Music. His scores have been published in Italy by Suvini Zerboni – Sugar Music Spa and Edizioni Sconfinarte.

He was teacher of basic composition, theory, and other subjects at Chilean universities Católica Silva Henríquez, Del Pacífico and Bolivariana. At the Universidad Católica de Chile he held assistant professorships in Music History, Latin American music and Music Audition, developing artistic projects, academic texts and until today writing in the music journal Resonancias.

His works has been performed by Sconfinarte orchestra, Magritte trio and Divertimento Ensemble (Milan), the Algoritmo ensemble (Rome), Taller de Música Contemporánea, Trio Croma and Orquesta Sinfónica de la Serena (Chile), Ensamble sXXI (Spain), MIVOS quartet (USA), Ensamble Iberoamericano and Sonic Art Saxophone quartet (Germany), as well as world class musicians such the flutist Mario Caroli, the clarinetist Paolo Beltramini, guitarrist Diego Castro and other performers of the Conservatoire de Strasbourg, the Internationalen Ferienkurse of Darmstadt, Parco della Musica (Rome), Sala Verdi of Milan, Real Academia de San Fernando (Madrid), Chapelle Saint Bernard de Montparnasse (Paris), the UNIACC University (Santiago) and Paris Conservatory, among others.

He was lecturer at the Alban Conference Grenoble Universités, at the Musikhochschule Franz Liszt Weimar, at the universities Católica de Chile and Católica Silva Henríquez in Santiago, as well as at the Estudio Modular de Música Actual, in Valparaíso. He was Resident Composer at the Spanish Academy in Rome, supported by the Spanish Government, at the International Center dés Récollets in Paris, supported by the Institut Français and at the ”La Cabaña” Center in La Paz, Bolivia, thanks to the American States Organization (Ibermúsicas program).

He has received recognitions, awards and scholarships from the Alban Program of European Union, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Italy, Spanish Agency for International Cooperation (AECID), Institute Français (Paris), Music Founds for Culture (Santiago), Castiglioni First Prize (Milan), Luis Advis Composition Competition First Prize (Coquimbo), Spanish Society of Authors and Editors (SGAE), Chilean Government and American States Organization.

Together with his residency at Saari, upcoming activities include a new Chamber Opera with FOJI Foundation in Chile, a multimedia project for Spanish Cultural Centers around the world, as well as new compositions to be faced in Bolivia, thanks to Ibermúsicas Program and Cinenómada Foundation.

He lives and works in Vigevano, Northern Italy.