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Daniela Cortez, Inatel Foundation Prize winner: "Today I am a more confident woman".

Ex-aequo winner of the Inatel Foundation Prize 2022, Daniela Cortez plays today her bassoon at the Auditório da Reitoria da Universidade Nova de Lisboa, in a concert that starts at 21:00, and repeats on Saturday, at 21:30, in Lourinhã. Metropolitana interrupted the last rehearsal and talked to the music a few hours before its consecration.

She is 32 years old, comes from Chile, where “nothing is easy, let alone studying music”. She arrived in Portugal in 2019 to study at Metropolitana. “I have learned a lot, I have grown a lot. I have enjoyed a lot,” stresses the musician, who won ex-aequo the Inatel Foundation Prize 2022.

The consecration concert takes place this Friday evening, 9pm, at the Rectory Auditorium of Universidade Nova de Lisboa (Campolide Campus), with Schumann’s Fourth programme, played by the Metropolitan Academic Orchestra (OAM), conducted by Jean-Marc Burfin.

Besides Schumann’s Symphony No. 4 and the premiere of the work Reminiscência, commissioned by Metropolitana to ANSO’s former student Francisco Lima da Silva, this Friday’s concert features Mozart’s Bassoon Concerto, performed by Daniela Cortez.

“It is a work from the basic repertoire for bassoon, which is always asked for in competitions, and which I started studying about five years ago”, says Daniela Cortez, adding that it is a “very difficult” piece. And she explains why. “It requires a lot of maturity. It has many details of phrases that Mozart wrote very well and that have to be matured in the musician’s head, so that they look beautiful. It’s not a piece to study and play straight away. You need to rest, to have mental clarity about what you are playing”, explains Daniela, who has been helped by the Metropolitana teacher Vera Dias.

“I hope this concert is the culmination of a long work. I hope to enjoy the work and the study. And, of course, I hope people enjoy it. That they enjoy the moment”, says, smiling, the award-winning musician, who has already learnt “some words that are used in Portugal”.

From Chile, where she arrived three years ago, she brings back difficult memories. “It’s not easy to study there, much less to study music. It is not easy to find good teachers”, she says. Perhaps this is why Daniela has always found it difficult to believe in her potential.

“This award from the Inatel Foundation gave me security and confidence in my own abilities. I am older than my colleagues and my background did not help. I always doubted my own abilities. The prize has helped me”, stresses the soloist, who adds that today she is “a more secure woman”.

“Giving up music was never an option, but today I am more certain that music is my life”, she concludes.