Dear Bety Pujol Cajal, what are your references to Maria Callas?
As a soprano, she was able to play memorable characters. She was characterised by a personal style that was not always clean and precise, in addition to her somewhat conflictive personality and rivalry among her peers. However, in spite of all these conflicts that characterised her life, I think she was a woman to admire, for her time she was a strong woman with firm convictions. Unfortunately, her life and career did not end in the way one would think an opera star’s career would end. She stopped attending her concerts and her commitments as an artist because of unrequited love and this led her to lose her light in Opera. Not only did she lose her voice, which many say was due to her weight loss, but she also lost her purpose in life, spending her days alone in a house without wanting to go out or see many people.
What is the aura of „Callas“ for you?
An aura of power no doubt, strong and perhaps a little dark because of thesadness of having to endure so much rejection in her life.
Is there a particular piece of music that you would like to highlight and why?
From Maria Callas? Her interpretation of La Traviata – Aria: Addio al passato. Callas was an atypical soprano in the way she conveyed the emotions of her singing to the audience. When her character died on stage, she performed it with a precise degree of realism. In no work does she express this feeling better than in the final part of Verdi’s La Traviata, her last note is heartbreaking. In my personal taste, Max Richter’s compositions are my main source of inspiration. As he himself has said in an interview, his music is created for the listener to think and reflect and I think that is what he clearly provokes within me; a constant reflection that leads to creative and artistic inspiration.
How do you see Maria Callas in her artistic development?
Maria Callas was undoubtedly the great Diva of the 20th century, she was atalented, visionary and fragile woman, who dedicated a lot of time and effort to her career. Without a doubt she had a magnificent development as an artist, performing all the most well-known characters in opera and was highly regarded in the opera environment at the highest level of her career.
What was your path to dance?
Well, I started when I was very young. When I was 4 years old I went to pick up my sister from dance school and I watched part of the ballet and contemporary dance classes, I would dance with my brother and sister creating choreographies in the living room. Soon after this, I began to attend dance school.
Then later when I was older and more conscious of my decisions, I made the complicated decision to be an artist. It’s a career of uncertainty, you never know if your career is going to be fruitful or not, if you get hurt and it’s all over, if an audition comes up and you have to go to another country in 3 days or if you get rejected and you’re out of work for a while. But to this day, I continue to fight for my passion for art and specifically for dance.
What inspires you and what themes are important to you in your art?
I am a very creative person, I see art and dance everywhere. An empty place gives me artistic ideas, people in the street give me ideas of movement, going on the metro and everyone moving at the same time is one of the most fun sources of inspiration. Seeing the sculptures in the city provides me with scenes of movement. I also find inspiration not only in other artists, musicians, painters, writers, and dancers but also from my life experiences. Often my failures and dark moments are what pushed me to create and show my art.
What are your upcoming project plans?
With my independent dance group I am currently preparing for a performance of four of my choreographies to be presented on the 20th of May at the Theatre Arche. Here is the link to the website where you can see our work and buy tickets for the event. https://palomasol04.wixsite.com/bety-pujol-cajal/copia-de-contacto
I am also a choreographer in the youth company Tanz die Toleranz with whom we have the premiere of a piece on the 18th of June, which we are also looking forward to.
I am also continuing my movement research and training Tango again which is a passion that always comes back into my life.
What does Vienna mean to you?
How do you see the possibilities and what do you wish for dance in Vienna?
From my point of view, not knowing the language perfectly makes it difficult for an artist to fully integrate. However, there is no denying the opportunities and financial support the city gives to the arts. In the summer the city fills up with festivals of all kinds, giving artists the opportunity to showcase their work and people the chance to consume art of all categories.
What can you take from Maria Callas on your artistic path?
Dedication, effort and perseverance.
May I ask you to conclude with an acrostic?
Admirable effort and career dedication
Iconic woman who with her voice
Achieved, admiration and respect for her art.
Cries and dramas,
Led to her
Loneliness in her final days.
A diva, a
Vielen Dank, liebe Bety Pujol Cajal, für das wunderbare gemeinsame Projekt in Bild&Wort und viel Freude und Erfolg weiterhin!
100. Geburtstag Maria Callas _ 2023
Bety Pujol Cajal, Dancer, Choreographer _ Wien __acting Maria Callas, Sängerin (* 2.12.1923 New York ´16.9.1977 Paris)
Aktuelle Produktion _ Bety Pujol Cajal „One night four pieces“
SAMSTAG, 20. MAI 2023 UM 19:30
Theater Arche _ Wien
Interview&alle Fotos _ Walter Pobaschnig