Povilas Syrrist-Gelgota

Viola

− It is like a language of emotions. One can say so much more by playing music than one can by using words.

Povilas Syrrist-Gelgota

Violist Povilas Syrrist-Gelgota is from Lithuania and grew up in a musical family.

− Both my parents were musicians and music was always of great importance in our home, he says.

− I started playing myself when I was five years old. As I child, I often played in old people’s homes, churches and kindergartens. I felt that the music I was playing was important to those listening, and that inspired me to pursue a musical profession.

− It is like a language of emotions

In addition to playing the viola, he sometimes performs as a singer - and sometimes he does both simultaneously. He finds great joy in being able to express himself through music:

− It is like a language of emotions. One can say so much more by playing music than one can by using words.

He started with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra in 2002, and constantly experiences new highlights with the orchestra; he is especially fond of going on tour. There is one period in music history which lies especially close to his heart:

− I am a romantic type, and I love Romantic music.

− The most important thing is to open your ears and your heart

Besides orchestral music, Povilas plays a lot of chamber music, and he is part of the Duo Oktava with his wife Toril Syrrist-Gelgota, who is a cellist and his colleague in the Oslo Philharmonic.

− My orchestral ideal is for the orchestra to function as a large chamber music ensemble, where every single musician takes the initiative and plays with a lot of energy.

He doesn’t believe that having as much knowledge as possible is the key to a good concert experience:

− The most important thing is to open your ears and your heart; don’t seek to understand the music, just enjoy it and let it happen.

Povilas is a keen cultural emissary between Norway and Lithuania, and has been honoured by his native country’s embassy for his efforts. When he isn’t playing, he likes best to spend time with his family and their three small children.

Povilas website: http://www.povilas.info/