EMMANUEL WITZTHUM PORTFOLIO | BIO & ARTISTIC STATEMENT
Emmanuel’s artistic practice is diverse and includes work as violist and composer where his music style is eclectic ranging in more experimental work that explores qualities of sound and philosophical and aesthetic questions relating to composition. For example his work at IRCAM “And Yet” (2001) explored the theatrics of the human voice, a research into the properties of the voice to express dramatic representations of victimhood and oppression, or “Ripple Patterns no. 9” for the Meitar ensemble in Israel which was created as a response to “Venetan Woman no. 9” by Giacometti in which he stripped the qualities and contradictions of the form of the sculpture to create a musical expression of the sculpture. While at the same time Emmanuel composes music of a more neoclassical romantic style which has been released on labels in the UK, France and Belgium and performed live in Europe and the USA. He has composed music for dance works by the Alvin Ailey Dance Company, The Pacific North Western Ballet, Yasmeen Godder among others. He has also created sound installations for the Jewish museum in Berlin, the Tmuna Theatre in Israel, The Ayumi Gallery as part of DesignArt in Tokyo and the National Library of Israel.
Emmanuel is also fascinated by the world of Music concrete especially field recordings, creating projects from live performances, to interactive experiences to sound and audio visual installations that have been presented in Japan, the USA, Europe and Israel that utilize field recordings of everyday life as the source of artistic creation and expression.
the creation of digital installations and performances that reimagine the relationship between music, cities and communities. He has created collaborations with partners of great diversity on such projects such as Google; Future en Seine Festival, Paris; The Matadero, Madrid; The Jewish Culture Festival, Krakow, The Jewish Museum, Berlin; The Magnes Museum, Berkeley, The Jerusalem Season of Culture, The ZKM, Karlsruhe and many others.
Emmanuel has over 10 years of experience as artistic director of cultural centers, projects and festivals, creative placemaking projects and the initiation and management of interactive web experiences. He has initiated the creation of immersive artistic web platforms such as mixthecity.com that reimagine the relationship between music, cities and communities, while also directing community led artistic projects that connect people from different cultural and social backgrounds such as “Shalem - Symphony of Broken Harmonies” in Jerusalem in which he led the creation of an orchestra of over 100 musicians who all played on broken or abandoned musical instruments. Palestinians and Israelis, from children to pensioners, amateurs to professionals came together to perform original music created especially for the orchestra as part of the Jerusalem Season of Culture. His approach as artistic director is strategic in its planning and structure, always driven by a connection to the context in which the project or venue is places, the community with which it wishes to connect and correspond. For example when he was artistic director of “The Lab” Theater, Jerusalem he created an entire aritstic program based on Jerusalem as a source of pluralistic, tolerant artistic inspiration creating 6 original productions all relating to Jerusalem from a wide array of perspectives. He has also served as artistic consultant to The Israel Festival Jerusalem, The Tel Aviv Municipality and The Tmuna Theater, Tel Aviv. Most recenety he served as Head of Arts and Global Digital Project Manager at the British Council leading the creation of over 20 interactive artistic platforms in India, Africa, Europe and Afghanistan.
As violist, he has performed with The Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, NYC; Ensemble Intercontemporain (with whom he recorded for Deutsche Grammophon) under Pierre Boulez, The Berlin Staatsoper, The Israel Philharmonic and others.
Emmanuel lectures at the Tel Aviv University Lahav Arts Management program on audience development in the digital age and on utilizing social network platform frameworks to generate business models in the arts. In 2012 He was a visiting artist at UC Berkeley, California with guest lectures at Stanford and UCLA.
Emmanuel holds a bachelor’s degree from the Manhattan School of Music where he studied viola with Michael Tree and composition with Dr. Nils Vigeland, and a masters degree from the Hebrew University, Jerusalem in Culture Studies. He was a guest composer at the DAAD Kuenstler program in Berlin.
Emmanuel has released music on labels in the UK, France, Belgium and Israel.