ANTONIO MORMONE INTERNATIONAL PRIZE
ANTONIO MORMONE (1930- 2017)
Born in Naples in 1930, he completed his law studies graduating cum laude at the University Fede-rico II in his city, Naples.
In parallel with his academic studies, he cultivated a passion for poetry, philosophy and music. During his life, Antonio regularly met with some of the greatest artists in the world and many young musicians at the dawn of their careers: to all of them he showed his esteem, friendship and encouragement. In 1983, alongside his managerial activity, he founded La Società dei Concerti (now a Foundation), which immediately stood out for its artistic choices and for its passionate public, becoming an important concert institution.
For several years he was president of I Solisti Veneti. He was also a farsighted talent scout. His discoveries include great artists such as Stanislav Bunin, Evgeny Kissin, Maxim Vengerov, Vadim Repim, Anatoly Ugorsky and Grygory Sokolov, who played for the first time in Italy for the Foundation La Società dei Concerti. Among the numerous artists launched by Antonio Mormone there are pianists Olga Kern, Fazil Say, Konstantin Lifshitz, Valentina Lisitsa, Beatrice Rana, Antonio Chen Guang and violinists Sergej Krilov, Lorenza Borrani, Stefan Milenkovich, Anna Tifu.
One of the unforgettable concerts organised for the Italian audience remains that of the legendary pianist Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli at the Festspielhaus in Bregenz, Austria.
A very important chapter of my life, one which has always been with me since I was a child, is music. I’ve always been interested in what music could disguise and offer. I have always had, in my briefcase, on my desk, a music book, and it is so to this day. I’ve frequented concert halls and during my travels abroad I’ve always taken the opportunity to listen to a great artist or a symphony orchestra. I have spent time with great musicians beyond their performances and I have been, and still am, close friends with many of them. I’ve always believed that music can bring, if not happiness, positive feelings to the human soul and, when I founded La Società dei Concerti, I worked hard so that people coming to the concerts could feel joy in participating in and sharing music.
Ever since my first years working in music, I’ve wanted to offer important opportunities to young artists, and I was helped in achieving this by my passion, my sensitivity and my “instinct” for artistic talent. I’ve always been convinced that people graduating from a Conservatory of music are not yet artists or musicians ready for the public audience. What is required to pursue a concert career are, beside talent and commitment, strong nerves, the ability to concentrate and, above all, a great personality. Who has not nurtured these characteristics will, at best, prepare for concerts.
I fondly remember the letter I received a few weeks ago from the President of the Italian Republic Giorgio Napolitano. To the compliments for our activity and our cultural initiatives he added his admiration for our capacity to help young people start their concert careers. I am very happy and proud when many great artists of today remember that they began with Antonio Mormone. I receive a steady flow of news from them, they keep me informed about their successes, their lives, and I am honoured by the close and friendly relations I have with them. Some of them frequent my home when they are in Italy. I consider this a great gift and a wonderful acknowledgment.
I have lived with the spirit of self-denial and sacrifice but, above all, with passion and trust in the means and intelligence proper of humankind, despite a certain spirit of rebellion towards some social conventions. Music fires my enthusiasm and, with unsurrendering determination, I pass my enthusiasm on to young people of quality.”
Premio Internazionale Antonio Mormone
C.so di Porta Vittoria, 18 - 20122 Milano - Tel.: +390266984134
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