Anima Eterna Brugge

Musicians in the flow

‘For me, Anima Eterna is a love story that’s lasted for more than thirty years now. So many discoveries, so many encounters’.

Martin Mürner, horn

Anima Eterna flows on, and can only keep on flowing by virtue of its musicians, an international collective of many individual voices who think and dream, dare and discover. Driven by a pure passion for the small, historical details: not that instrument, but this one. Not played that way, but just a bit differently. And not using that score, but this other one. These bits of information may seem unimportant in the larger historical scheme of things, but they are what make the difference for the Anima musicians. A huge difference. Between what we think we know and what may take our breaths away: the past. But a different past.

‘Nothing is taken for granted with Anima Eterna. Everything can be questioned. That’s one of the best things you can experience as a musician’.

Beltane Ruiz, double bass

This search carries some risks. Who would dare to fiddle with things that seem to be set in stone? Who would dare to appear on the concert stage with a historical instrument that no one has played for a hundred years? And who would dare to cast away the confidence in research that has already been done? For the musicians of Anima Eterna, every new project is an open-ended experiment. No one knows beforehand what it will sound like: it is precisely this sense of inquiry that connects them.

‘This path to the future fits in with who we are and the artistic toolbox that the years with Jos have given us. The new conductors will be jumping onto a moving train as it were, but at the same time they’re taking us to unexpected places. I’m looking forward to that’.

Femke Huizinga, violin

They listen, they watch, they react. Their ears take in the complete sound, as if they were floating above the whole, yet they dive deep into their parts, inspiring each other even from across the stage. That’s why music-making with Anima Eterna feels like playing chamber music with up to eighty musicians. As the Anima Eterna repertoire expanded, so has their sound palette: from the baroque, through classical and romantic periods and even into the twentieth-century repertoire.

And the team of musicians has gradually grown as well. Without auditions, but instead based on artistic affinity. Knowledge is passed on organically from one generation to the next, from old to young. The identity of Anima Eterna flows on in this way through the notes, renewing itself again and again.

The musicians of Anima Eterna will carry this identity forwards in the coming seasons and will take more of a leading role in the orchestra’s artistic planning. After all, the working relationship with the new conductors is full of mutual invitations to be creative and to have ground-breaking concert experiences. The conductors will take on new repertoires that are unexplored territory for Anima Eterna. The musicians in turn will take the conductors along on their searches for historical instruments and playing styles. They will inspire – simply with how they sound, how they play, how they stay in the flow.