Diana Rotaru

composer

Biography

One of the most visible young Romanian composers, Diana Rotaru (b. 1981, Bucharest) has written over 50 works, from chamber and orchestral music to chamber opera, multimedia shows and film soundtracks. Her music explores different expressive directions, such as hypnagogia or pre-oneiric aesthetics, feminine psyche and subtle eroticism or imaginary folklore. She has also been active as a promoter of new music in Romania, being the artistic director of SonoMania new music ensemble (since 2012), co-artistic director of InnerSound International New Arts Festival (2012-2015) and the main coordinator of the Romanian Music Information Center (CIMRO). She has worked with the SeduCânt synchretic group in various multimedia projects. She is currently teaching at the National University of Music in Bucharest (Composition and Composition Practice, Music Analysis). 

Diana Rotaru studied with Ştefan Niculescu and Dan Dediu at the  National University of Music in Bucharest (2000-2005) – where she has a PhD in Composition (with the dissertation The Recent Trance and the Principle of Repetition in New Music, 2012) – and with Frédéric Durieux at the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris (2005-2006). She participated at different summer composition courses such as Acanthes (Metz, 2008), Voix Nouvelles-Royaumont (2002 and 2006), or the International Bartok Seminary (Szombathely, 2003), thus working with Salvatore Sciarrino, Brian Ferneyhough, Michael Jarrell, François Paris, Jonathan Harvey among others. 

She was a resident at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris (Autumn 2007), on a George Enescu grant from the Romanian Cultural Institute. In April 2011 she was an artist-in-residence at Villa Sträuli, Winterthur (Switzerland), at the invitation of Ensemble TaG, who performed her music in two concerts during that period (Verborgen in einer Muschel/ Hidden Inside a Shell - Theater am Gleis and Meet the Artist: Diana Rotaru -Villa Sträuli). In April-June 2015 she was Artist-in-Residence in Vienna, with a grant offered by the Austrian Federal Chancellery & KulturKontakt Vienna. 

She has won numerous prizes, among which the Romanian Academy’s George Enescu Award (2010), the ISCM-IAMIC Young Composer Award (World Music Days, Vilnius, 2008), the Irino Prize (Japan, 2004) or the George Enescu Prize ex-aequo (Romania, 2003 and 2005). Her works have been commissioned by Ensemble XXI (Dijon), Stockholm Saxophone Quartet, Pärlor för svin, Ernst von Siemens Foundation, Takefu International Music Festival, etc.

Since December 2016 she is the Director of the Publishing House of the National University of Music in Bucharest. 

Studies

2012 - PhD in composition at the National University of Music in Bucharest with the dissertation "The Recent Trance and the Principle of Repetition in New Music"

2008 - 2012 - PhD course in Composition at National University of Music, Bucharest (mentor - Dan Dediu)

2006-2007 - MA in Composition at National University of Music, Bucharest

2005-2006 - Erasmus exchange student at the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris, where she studied with Frederic Durieux (composition), Michael Levinas (music analysis), Luis Naon, Tom Mays and Yann Geslin (electronic music)

2000-2005 - undergraduate studies (BA) in Composition at National University of Music, Bucharest where  she studied with Stefan Niculescu and Dan Dediu.

1995-2000 - George Enescu Music Highscool, Bucharest (piano) -  winning several prizes at Romanian national piano competitions

Summer courses in composition:

2008 - Acanthes (Metz, France), with Salvatore Sciarrino, Fabio Nieder, Michele Reverdy

2006 & 2002 - Voix Nouvelles (Royaumont, France), with Jonathan Harvey, Brian Ferneyhough, Michael Jarrell, François Paris and Theo Loevendie

2003 - International Bartok Seminar (Szombathely, Hungary), with Jonathan Harvey, Michael Jarell and Marco Stroppa

2008, 2005, 2004 & 2003 - Contemporary Music Summer Courses (Breaza, Romania), with Dan Dediu, Octavian Nemescu, Erik Peters, Marian Borkowsky, Adrian Iorgulescu

Prizes

2011 - The Romanian Academy Award, for "Hypnos"

2009 - Takefu International Music Festival Prize, ex-aequo with Federico Gardella

2008 - ISCM-IAMIC Young Composer Award, World Music Days, Vilnius (Lithuania)

2007 - The Prize for Excellency for Young Composers, awarded by the National Union of Romanian Patronage

2005 - the Great Prometheus Prize: Opera Prima, awarded by the “Anonimul” Foundation, Bucharest (Romania) & 1st Prize ex-aequo for orchestral work at the International Composition Competition “George Enescu”, Bucharest (Romania); 
Shakti was recommended for international radio broadcasting at the International Rostrum of Composers, Vienna 2005 

2004 - Irino Prize,Tokyo (Japan) for orchestral work   (for "Shakti") & Best Composition Prize at the “Contemporary Music Summer Courses", Breaza (Romania)

2003 - 1st prize ex-aequo for chamber music at the International Composition Competition “George Enescu”, Bucharest (Romania) & 1st Prize at the National Student Composition Competition “Alexandru Zirra”, Iasi (Romania)

2002 -1st Prize at the National Student Composition Competition “Alexandru Zirra”, Iasi (Romania) & 1st Prize at the National Student Composition Competition “Paul Constantinescu”, Bucharest (Romania)

2001 - 1st Prize at the National Student Composition Competition “Alexandru Zirra”, Iasi (Romania) & 3rd Prize at the National Student Composition Competition “Paul Constantinescu”, Bucharest (Romania)

1998 - The Great Prize and the Jury's Special Prize at the International Composition Competition for Young Composers "George Enescu", Bucharest (Romania)

Teaching

2013 - present - Assistant Lecturer - Composition, Compositional Praxis, Theory of Instruments, Analysis - at the National University of Music in Bucharest

2009 - 2013 - Collaborator - Compositional Praxis -  at the National University of Music in Bucharest

2008 - 2010 - Assitant Collaborator - Music theory and  Tonal Harmony - at the Spiru Haret University, the Faculty of Music

2006-2007 - Collaborator - Music Analysis and Music Theory - at the "George Enescu” Music Highscool, Bucharest (Romania)

Cultural Activities

Since 2012 – Co-Artistic Director of InnerSound International New Arts Festival in Bucharest (http://innersoundfestival.webs.com)

Since 2012 – Artistic Director of SonoMania New Music Ensemble (http://sonomania.webs.com/)

April 2011 – Artist in Residence at Villa Sträuli – Winterthur, Switherland, at the invitation of Ensemble TaG; two composer profile concerts played by Ensemble TaG and singer Irina Ungureanu, at Theater am Gleis (April 10) - Verborgen in einer Muschel/ Hidden Inside a Shell – and at Villa Sträuli (April 19)

Since 2010 – Member of SeduCânt experimental syncretic group specialised in multimedia projects (http://seducant.webs.com)

Since 2007 - Member of the Romanian Union of Composers (Bucharest); member of ISCM - International Society for Contemporary Music, the Romanian Section

Since 2006 - Member of ARFA - Romanian Woman Artists Association

2007, October-December - Residence at the “Cite Internationale des Arts”, Paris, offered by the Romanian Cultural Institute

2007 – August 13-14 - Invited composer (lecture) at the Choreographic Composition Workshop held by Susan Buirge, Fondation Royaumont (France)

Press

Irina Stanescu - "Actualitatea Muzicala" nr. 10, octombrie 2007, Bucuresti
"...in deschiderea concertului am ascultat piesa Corale si cutii muzicale a Dianei Rotaru, compozitie simfonica in cadrul careia tensionarile si relaxarile, imprevizibilul si absurdul se subordoneaza unui demers componistic temperamental, puternic. Contemporaneitatea pune la dispozitia creatorilor actuali o vasta paleta de mijloace expresive. Diana Rotaru a demonstrat capacitatea rara de selectare si combinare autentica a acestora, avand ca rezultat o muzica "moderna", unde principiul consonantei pare a fi redimensionat."

Petre Codreanu - "Actualitatea Muzicala" nr. 10, octombrie 2007, Bucuresti
"...Corale si cutii muzicale de Diana Rotaru (...) E o piesa solid articulata, cu luxurianta timbrala, climaxuri atent pregatite, contraste spectaculoase, lucrare ce dezvaluie talent componistic viguros."

Joel Crotty - "Vivid - Romania through international eyes" - Vivid Music - The Joel Crotty review (regarding the CD release "Romanian Women Composers 2", Musica Nova and the Romanian Radio Broadcasting Corporation, 2006)

“…Diana Rotaru’s Gothic Hallucinations. The sonic experience, at least for me, did envelop both eerie nightmarish states as well as strong, forthright moments that brought me back to the real world. This oscillation between these opposite spectrums allowed for a wonderfully structured work that engages from start to finish. I think out of all the pieces in this anthology, and there are seventeen of them, this is by far my favourite and one I have come back to on several occasions.”