Volume 5 / Chapter 187
Beethoven’s music is called a perfect building at times. Instead of being chased by inspiration to complete it, it is as though after designing it, the weak parts are reinforced, and beautiful aesthetics are added to fill in any empty spaces to create a full building.
The choral concerto is a piece that follows this kind of Beethoven’s thought perfectly. However, the present age wants to see new conversion of ideas that make people think though it may not be perfect.
“Committee Head. If we choose this song, it means that we’re undermining the development of the music we’ve advanced until now. Isn’t it difficult as it is to endure with contemporary music? If we choose a song like one of the past, we’ll have music from the Baroque, Classical, Romantic ages flooding in next time.”
The real reason for being against Jun Hyuk’s song came out. Their desire to block not the music but a retrogression from the flow of time is even making them forget the nature of music.
“Is that really what you think? That songs like this will come flooding in? How many composers are capable of this! That is unreasonable. This may or may not come out once in every 100 years. It has been 200 years since the choral symphony came out. This means that one has come out in 200 years.”
Just as it was yesterday, the opinions that they cannot go back to the past and that they need to simply accept the music by itself are standing against each other.
“You will all know that when choosing judges, anyone prejudiced toward modern music was excluded. But now that we’re here, there is someone who really has a prejudice. Is anything that is a classical form an imitation and impure?”
It had reached personal attacks. If this is how they are going to speak, they can no longer hold the discussion. Marion Cotillard needs to prevent it before the matter grows worse.
“Everyone stop! This is all. Everyone stop speaking.”
Marion Cotillard asked the competition board employee outside for coffee. Once all of the judges calm down, they will listen to what she has to say.
No one spoke for over 10 minutes as they drank coffee. Marion Cotillard checked everyone’s faces to make sure that they calmed down, and spoke,
“Music needs to be more innovative and needs to develop. This is not the case with just music. This is necessary in art because the art we create today is a legacy that is passed on.”
She spoke slowly and clearly.
“However, it is not for us to practice a new challenge. This is what artists and philosophers do. We just encourage them through this competition.”
She looked at the judges and started to play her role,
“Alright everyone, please close your eyes.”
Everyone closed their eyes.
“Empty your minds. And don’t lose the one melody of the 12 works that is constantly ringing in your head. That is the song that you need to choose. Think about our dear ‘Palais des Beaux-arts’.”
The Palais des Beaux-arts was erected by famous Belgian architect Victor Horta in 1922 to 1929, and the beautiful art center is the pride of Brussels. It has the Henry Le Boeuf Hall a large concert hall with 2,200 seats, a chamber concert hall with 476 seats, a studio with 210 seats, and multi-purpose halls. It is called BOZAR in shorthand.
The biggest hall, Henry Le Boeuf, is the stage for the Belgian National Orchestra, Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Queen Elisabeth Competition final performance.
“The melody that you want to hear ringing out in that wonderful space. The song that you want to hear most. That is the song that you choose.”
She could tell just by looking at the expressions of the judges with their eyes closed. Their faces show that they are thinking of the same song. Marion Cotillard had nothing more to say. The only thing left to do is give an honest vote with what their hearts are telling them.
“With the 2nd vote in front of us, I will say one last thing before starting the vote. If you were all conductors, which song would you perform?”
“Then I will announce the results of the 2nd round of votes.”
All of the judges focused on Marion Cotillard.
“1st place, ‘Choral Concerto’ 10 votes. 2nd place, ‘World of Europe’ 2 votes. That is all. If anyone has objections, speak now.”
All of the judges except for 2 looked relieved. They did not have lingering regrets in the results because they had left everything to the melody and rhythm instead of a belief or rational thought like philosophy.
There were no objections to the votes that confirmed 2nd and 3rd places.
“Then check the ballot and if you don’t see anything amiss, sign the final report.”
Marion Cotillard looked pleased as she passed the voting sheet to the judges.
“Then shall we check to see whose work this is?”
Once the board employee received the results of the vote, he checked the 3 composers. After more than 10 minutes, the employee pulled out the list of composers and said,
“I will announce the composers. 1st place, Choral Concerto, Jun Hyuk Jang, Korea. 2nd place, World of Europe, Marlin Oscar Guggenheim IV, Austria. 3rd place, Deception, Jipuji Chang, China.”
The most familiar name to the judges is Guggenheim. The youngest son of a tremendously wealthy family in Austria. He is a young 20 year old showing exceptional talent in composition and the violin.
The rumor that the father used an entire orchestra in order to teach his young son the violin, shows how wealthy the family is.
“This year is quite peculiar. Normally, people over the age of 30 have good results in composition… I guess they are getting younger as time goes by.”
“The development of Asians doesn’t stop. It’s impressive.”
“Are the 2 Asian finalists complete rookies? The name seems familiar.”
One of the judges kept mumbling,
“Jun Hyuk Jang, Jun Hyuk Jang… I feel like I’ve heard the name before. Ah…..!”
He stopped mumbling and quickly started a search on the laptop.
Jun Hyuk Jang a.k.a. Jun. Conductor. Composer. Jazz & rock musician. Record: Symphony Inferno, Jazz Album ‘The First’ …..
“In – Inferno!”
The judge who read the search results could not continue speaking. The other people who heard ‘Inferno’ gathered around the laptop.
“Look at this. No wonder the name seemed familiar. The composer of Choral Concerto is Inferno’s Jun. How could this be.”
“What? Are you talking about that Jun?”
“Could it be two people with the same name? Asian names do sound similar…..”
One of the judges quickly ran outside. He caught the board employee and gave him an order.
“We don’t know yet, so let’s wait. We need to confirm it for sure first.”
An employee came running into the conference room, panting.
“It’s… It’s right. It is the same person. We just checked with the phone number on the entry, and it was Stern Corporation. They say that he signed with the agency.”
Marion Cotillard finally understood why President Stern had called. She remembered that Jun Hyuk had signed on with Stern Corporation.
“The backlash will be big. The winning song is Jun’s.”
“Why would someone with such fame enter a competition? Does he want the laurels as well…..”
“Strictly speaking, he is still a rookie. It’s just that he doesn’t feel like one because his first song was so famous.”
The atmosphere in the conference room became excited due to this unexpected truth.
“There there. Let’s not be fazed by it. Our work is done. Let’s tell the committee about our decision, and then what do you think about getting a refreshing beer?”
Everyone left the conference room at Marion Cotillard’s suggestion. They went into a pub with a refreshed spirit that they had perfectly completed their homework. Belgium, the beer capital. All of the judges were thinking that they should drink a lot tonight. The hot topic of the night would of course become Jang Jun Hyuk.