Last year Sara, Lúcia, Miguel and Hugo lived the same dream: after their graduation at ANSO they did a post-graduation course with an internship at Orquestra Metropolitana de Lisboa. Now that the adventure is over, there is no doubt in anyone’s mind: they will leave Metropolitana much richer than when they came here.
It’s not a goodbye, just a “see you soon”. She has only just packed her bags, but already has her mind set on coming back. “My immediate future? An invitation to join the OML soon”, says the 22-year-old violinist Lúcia Salvado, between laughs.
“Fortunately for next year I already have my life in order. I will join a master’s degree in teaching in Évora and I also won a vacancy which opened up for the Cascais and Oeiras orchestra. However, I will keep an eye on OML auditions, as it would be a pleasure for me to be able to return to this which was my home for many years and where I have many friends with whom I loved working”, she says.
Lúcia is one of the four young musicians who in the year of the Metropolitana’s 30th anniversary did a training course at OML, as part of a post-graduate course at ANSO, where they graduated.
They all have stories to tell, but in common the same sense of duty fulfilled. “From the beginning I felt very integrated. The first programme was the trip to Poland, which made the initial ice-breaker much easier”, she says, stressing that joining the OML in such a special year had a unique feeling: “I thought the season was very well planned. I had the opportunity to play in very good concert programmes that I had not expected to play for a while. Furthermore, the Metropolitana has been my home for seven years (I studied at EPM, ANSO, and now the internship), so to see its 30th anniversary celebration was special for me.”
From the Metropolitana she carries the certainty that “group spirit is one of the best things in an orchestra for a good final result”. “An orchestra can play very well, but if there is an almost family connection between everyone, as I felt this year, making music like that becomes even better,” she reasons.
At 25, Sara Ramalho talks about the “constant challenge”. “Although I already have plenty of experience playing in an orchestra, it is very different to be part of a full-time professional orchestra, with regular rehearsals and concerts every week with a new programme”. And she highlights that “it was a great privilege and a very enriching experience on a professional and personal level”.
For the violetist, “returning to this house to complete the training course in such a special year certainly had another flavour”.
“By allowing contact with professionals of excellence, both with the orchestra musicians and also with great conductors and mentors, this has not only contributed to a musical enrichment at various levels, but has also made clearer those aspects in which I still need to continue working, so that I can evolve even further and achieve my goals”.
Continuing to grow “as a musician and instrumentalist” is the main goal now. “I will be looking to apply for both orchestral auditions and teaching instrument lessons at conservatoire level, as I have also completed a master’s degree in music education this year.”
The violinist Miguel Ferreira, 23 years old, who also integrated the group of post-graduation students with internship in Orquestra Metropolitana de Lisboa, has not yet finished his master’s degree. His immediate future is precisely “to finish his master’s degree and try to join an orchestra”.
“If I could, I would continue to learn from these great musicians,” says the young man, who loved the internship, although he is sorry “that it ended so quickly”. “I discovered without a shadow of a doubt that I will be very happy working in an orchestra and that this is what I want to do with my life,” he says.
Stressing that he felt “completely at home”, Miguel Ferreira says he is “extremely lucky” to have had the opportunity.
Hugo Estaca, 26, also believes that the internship helped him to “develop a strong musical bond, particularly with the classical and symphonic repertoire and the necessary skills to perform it”.
“It was a privilege to be able to congratulate and celebrate the 30th anniversary of the OML in front of all the musicians and workers who share the project of this institution that teaches music of excellence”, highlights the cellist.
For the future, the young man’s path is mapped out: “Despite all the unknowns of the times we live in, I hope to be able to contribute to the teaching and learning of music and to continue to collaborate with orchestras, in order to remain active in this performing area”, he concludes.