Aktoty Raimkulova answered several questions about the country’s music industry.
During the day she works in the government, and after that continues to write music. Former teacher of Jah Khalib, suggested Imanbek Zeikenov to take up musical education. When talking about the success of Kazakhstani artists, he considers the phrase “the state has sucked up to it” unpleasant and unfair.
– Aktoty Rakhmatullaevna, who do you listen to from modern artists of Kazakhstan?
— I try to listen to music of various genres, representing both traditional, academic and popular music. We have many bright artists in the genres of pop, rap, jazz.
I have great respect for Dimash Kudaibergen, Scryptonite (Adil Zhalelov) and Jah Khalib, whose work has gained wide popularity not only in our country, but throughout the post-Soviet space.
Of course, one cannot but admire the story of Imanbek Zeikenov, a phenomenon that, it seems to me, has not yet been fully disclosed. There are talented pop musicians whose songs are loved by the people, they are heard on television, radio and at every festival: Kairat Nurtas, Madina Sadvakasova, “All Let’s Go” and dozens of other artists.
The duet Berkut and Aisha gathered its audience on YouTube.
In general, I believe that our popular music is now at a very high professional level and is well known in the country and the world.
There are also bright names in other genres. I would like us to be proud not only of Scryptonite and Imanbek.
The world knows and appreciates the work of many of our traditional musicians: kobyzshy Raushan Orazbayeva, dombra players Bilyal Iskakov, Edil Basygarayev, Kairolla Sadvakasov, Zhangali Zhuzbay, zhyrshy Ulzhan Baibosynova and many other talented singers, folk groups “Turan” and “Khassak”. These and many other talented artists who keep centuries-old wealth of intangible cultural heritage are often better known abroad than here.
Composers Zhamilya Zhazylbekova, Sanzhar Baiterekov, Rakhat-Bi Abdysagin gained great fame in the West in academic music. Of course, I didn’t name everyone whose music I listen to.
— Scriptonite? Do you understand his lyrics?
– I understand. I do not welcome profanity. I can’t say that I listen to Scryptonite with pleasure, but his success in a wide youth audience is very indicative. In the texts, he raises the topical problems of modern society: everyday difficulties faced by young people, the substitution of values, hypocrisy and morality. In addition, the texts of this artist are also part of the culture of our country, its modern appearance, which, as you understand, I need to represent in all facets. (smiles)
– Since we are talking about Scryptonite, Alla Pugacheva called Scryptonite her favorite akyn.
– Yes. I know. Do you think, it’s possible to surprise Alla Borisovna just like that?
– You, as a musician, what can you say about Imanbek? Was it luck or hard work?
— Imanbek is really unique. What he does in music is taught by a few conservatories and universities. This is a relatively new field of sound design, where without talent and hard work you will definitely not achieve anything. Among my colleagues, academic musicians, there was a rather lively discussion about the reasons for the popularity of Imanbek’s remix. Yes, his version sounds faster than the original, but that’s not the point. He very subtly and tastefully picked up an infectious dance rhythm, completely changed the timbre palette of the song, added electronic effects pleasant to the ear. The success of this “guy from the outback” is certainly not accidental and is very significant. The modern media space has changed a lot, and we need to have time to adapt to it, taking an example from people like him. Of course, when Imanbek received the Grammy, many, including me, paid attention to him. I immediately congratulated him and thanked him for the feeling of pride that he brought, I think, not only to me, but to all Kazakhstanis.
— Have you noticed that young Kazakh artists are becoming more and more popular in Russia and abroad? What is the phenomenon, in your opinion?
– In Russia, there is a lot of talking about the phenomenon of the Kazakhs, we discussed it at one of our meetings. Apparently, a special attitude to music and poetry is part of our genetic code. I am absolutely sure that everyone who was born on our land has a vein of akyn.
We have amazed the world with our talents before. Remember the story of Amre Kashaubaev, who presented the famous tradition of the Arka song at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1925. Now the world has simply become global, all barriers have disappeared, and Kazakhstan is more and more joining the world’s cultural communications. We are listened to literally on all continents.
I think the secret of Kazakhstani artists lies in the unique combination of cultural environment, affordable musical education, natural gift and, of course, hard work. Whatever they say, for example, about Imanbek, Dimash or any other of our stars, their achievements are, first of all, the result of many hours of passionate work.
– “Officers attach themselves”, or “the state attaches itself” to the success of our artists. There is such an opinion in society. Does it offend you as a minister?
– It’s a very bad word. I think it’s unfair to the state. Of course, such conversations were, are and will be in place. Let’s imagine how Dimash’s creative fate would have developed if, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, in the most difficult years for our country, we would not have been able to maintain the system of music education.
Now the Ministry of Culture and Sports is responsible for universities and colleges of arts, schools for gifted children. As a legacy from the Soviet era, we inherited a system of concert halls, philharmonic societies and theaters, orchestras, musical and theater groups, which we not only did not lose, but also significantly expanded over the years of independence. The Ministry is responsible for the infrastructure of culture, which we support in every possible way. A stable cultural environment has been created in the country, we have a place to grow talents.
-So you don’t agree with this opinion?
– Well, look, Dimash studied at the College of Music in Aktobe, brilliantly graduated from the Kazakh National University of Arts. Education is only part of government support. There are also mechanisms for financing trips to competitions and festivals, creative projects of young artists. The success of Dimash and many of our artists has a share of the state, but, of course, first of all, this is the result of titanic work. That’s the point. Our task as officials is to create conditions for the development of talents.
– You are both a pianist and a composer. Is there a place in the minister’s schedule for what they love?
— My working day starts at 8 am and lasts until late in the evening. But I still try to find time for music. If inspiration captures, I can sit on a new composition all night long and not feel tired. This is a very important time for me.
Gaziza Akhmetovna Zhubanova (People’s Artist of the USSR), my unforgettable teacher, always said: “Until you write music and until it sounds, you cannot be called a composer.” She herself, by the way, has always combined creative work with managerial work: in different years she was a deputy, rector of the conservatory.
Combining creative work with everyday work is not a new situation for me. I got used to working during the day as a teacher, administrative worker, then as an official, and writing music in the evenings and at nights.
But now it’s more of a hobby for which there is less and less time. After all, a minister is an official, and the main task of an official is to serve the people. There is a lot behind this. You need to be able to assess the situation in several sectors at once, plan for the years ahead, monitor compliance with laws, fulfill the instructions of the Head of State with high quality … It’s hard to find the time for creativity.
– Is it true that creative people need inspiration? Do you write when the muse visits you?
– The paradox is that you first need to start working, and then inspiration will come. Muse does not come spontaneously. And so is everywhere – not only in composing music, but also in any other daily work.
-To wake up in the morning already being a popular musician. Have you ever dreamed of such a thing?
– The first and, perhaps, the main condition for success is professionalism. It is born from two components: passion and hard work.
Somehow it happened that I did not dream of success. I just loved to compose my own and perform other people’s music. My teachers played an important role in my success as a composer, and above all, my mentor, the outstanding Kazakh composer Gaziza Akhmetovna Zhubanova.
From the outside it seems that success is coming out of the blue. The same Imanbek certainly went to success through many achievements, each of which was the result of overcoming difficulties, developing skills: the first remix, the first million views on TikTok, the first public performance …
Or the example of Jah Khalib. He also studied at the conservatory. This is my student, at that time I was the head of the Art Management department and the Vice-Rector of the Conservatory. He worked a lot in the studio, came to classes with red eyes, because he worked at night. A very talented guy. Kind and positively charged, hardworking. Miracles don’t happen.
At the pinnacle of success, of course, is a talented artist. But his parents, teachers, colleagues stand behind him. And at the base of this entire pyramid of success is our rich national heritage, the traditions of our native people and the infrastructure of culture, which I do my best to maintain and develop.
Original source: https://tengrinews.kz/