MUSIC TO OUR EARS - MUSICIAN AND COMPOSER MICHAEL JENNINGS STRIKES THE PERFECT CHORD
Welcome to our ONLINE STORE and blog.
As a barware, lighting and home accessories design company, at Thomas Fuchs Creative we specialize in handmade goods. Every week we give you a behind the scenes look at the people, places and things that inspire us.
This week we introduce you to musician and composer Michael Jennings. Michael, as with a lot of things in my life, was introduced to me by pure coincidence. While attending Salone del Mobile I kept trying to reach the International Press Coordinator Patricia who was like a moving target and me the heat seeking missile trying to track her down.
Mother & Son, Patricia and Michael
Once we finally met we started speaking and more than anything I was listening to her speak about the creativity that came out of covid and how all the repressed creativity sprung like flowers in a covid desert creating forrest full of trees with birds singing.
Which led her to telling me about her son Michael and how he played his grand piano all during covid and how people stopped outside their window to hear or inquired with their doorman where the beautiful music was coming from.
I was so taken with the story I asked for an introduction and meeting so I could cover it for our blog bringing yet another level of depth and perception to our company and our interests. I often compare it to surgeons also being musicians.
Micheal who also study philosophy in Germany has started his musical journey since he was seven or eight years old studying music at one of the most prestigious programs in Italy being heralded as a child prodigy of sorts. Flash forward to the culmination of his studies he has received a BA from Como and a MA in music from the Conservatory in Milan.
The Milan conservatory, named after Italy’s favorite opera composer, features a full-time symphony orchestra, as well as a jazz orchestra; students also study voice and popular-rock. Graduates end up in some of Europe’s top orchestras, with 90% of alumni working full-time in music, be it playing, teaching, in libraries or management.
In its 213 years, the conservatory has turned out talents including composer Giacomo Puccini, and conductors Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Muti, Riccardo Chailly and Cecilia Bartoli.
Teaching classical piano for awhile from home and then private schools, Michael feels every performer needs to be a teacher. He explains how it enables one to understand how to analyze specific issues and problems and shows one how to interpret and relate the solutions to the student which in turn solves the conundrum for themselves.
He states "holding yourself to a certain standard is an essential part of being a musician", there are a few that don't like to teach but they are the ones who usually may not hold themselves to the same standard.
During Covid he played in his loft with sound propagation he is clearly blessed with open minded neighbors who encouraged him to play with his windows open. Some of his friends neighbors are not as excited because being at the piano for 6-7 hours at a time could be hard on anyone be it the musician or the audience. Michael sounds like a true artist saying "more you grow the less time you have to practice as life takes it's charge" says the 28 year old.
Possibilities being infinite it's hard to set a goal the classical music life. In Italy a classical musicians bandwidth is ironically limiting. Germany has more phd programs in piano post masters. Another possibility could be at university in China his friend says China is the "promise land" because there are infinite opportunities to perform, great theater venues, and it is a vital part of social life and culture.
Michael has signed contract with label ursa rec who he met during pandemic and recorded a CD 💿 (see links below) released in 2021 Bachs Goldberg variations. Artist and label has agreed on an option next year they will finance a series of recording they are mostly jazz but Lago d'Orta and now has placed Michael in charge of the genre.
Ursa is situated within the Aula Arcobaleno park, an exclusive residence from the 1600s, located within a centuries-old forest among streams and wild herbs. Our priority is to preserve the ancient, curative and beneficial nature of this special place, which is close to the town yet out of reach of mass tourism. T
Its park covers an area of 3 hectares and contains numerous ancient fruit plants, a lavender field, a hemp field during summer, and a field of blueberries and medicinal herbs. Musicians are able to relax in the peaceful surroundings of our terrace in the woods, while also taking advantage of our solarium terrace, lake view terrace, and gazebo, where they enjoy a cup of herbal tea or coffee during the early hours of the morning before spending time in the recording studio.
Additionally, for those with an interest in botany, there is a vast array of plants and wild herbs to discover. Guests can also sample our honey and essential oils, and we even produce seasonal vegetables. At Ursa, we strive to offer a unique and authentic experience, allowing the musician residents to reconnect with nature and discover the true beauty of the magnificent geographic location.
Michael proves that there are still is a classical musician scene alive and kicking in Milan.
Links to Michael's Bach CD on Spotify/Itunes/Amazon Music/YouTube
Have a great weekend!