Photo by: Anton Tal

Beltane Ruiz Molina

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Beltane Ruiz Molina, born in 1983 (Soria, Spain) began playing the double bass at the age of 10. She was able to study in London, Berlin and Basel, thanks to many scholarships. She is into contemporary music and José Luis Torá, Walter Zimmermann, and Uli Fussenegger are among the artists who have had a significant impact on her career. She has been a founding member of the Zafraan Ensemble Berlin since 2010. She collaborates regularly with other ensembles in Germany, Austria, Netherlands and Spain. Amongst her career highlights as a soloist is Body Opera, an installation-work by the Polish composer Wojtek Blecharz that was brought to festivals such as Huddersfield and Rainy Days in Luxemburg. Her most recent musical challenge was Fury by Rebecca Saunders, a battle to push her own limits as well as the ones from the instrument. Nowadays she lives in Holland with her husband, son and three cheeky chickens.

FACTS

1. Truly listen to ourselves and each other would make the world so beautiful.

2. When I manage to be in the moment, live is a real pleasure.

3. Performing makes that so palpably. the moment I exactly now how something is gonna sound, magic is gone.

QUESTIONS

1. What is the biggest inspiration for your music?

As a performer, I am a fanatic reading historical sources about “old” music. This feeds me more and more, helps me to go deeper into the emotions and intentions of composers.

2. How and when did you get into making music?

As a child I liked to sing songs and search for harmonies with a keyboard and a guitar we had at home. Since I first saw the bass at age 9, we have been side by side in bad and good times.

3. What are 5 of your favourite albums of all time?

I love any of ECM records, beautiful personal albums of all kinds of genres.

Bach’s Goldberg variations played by Gustav Leonhardt. They have always brought me in a state of trance. I had them on while giving birth to my son.

4. What do you associate with Berlin?

Freedom, space, tolerance, the smell of lime trees, tasty strawberries, asparagus and currywurst. During my 12 years in Berlin I became independent, felt in love and made good friends. Now coming to Berlin brings me tons of memories.

5. What’s your favourite place in your town?

Here in Hoorn (NL) I love walking trough the old fishers houses around the harbour.

6. If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?

I became a mum right before the pandemic and so I lived for a while hardly without music. This changed me totally and made me see other beautiful things in life like gardening, repairing our own house, and of course spending time with my child. Although I missed it a lot and when I returned to play concerts I could feel how much music feeds me. I will never find something that brings me so strongly to myself than music.

7. What was the last record/music you bought?

Forests – Depth of field music by John Eckhardt. 113 minutes of Acoustic bass in a beautiful layout made by the artist himself.

8. Who would you most like to collaborate with?

I would love to work with a DJ on a show for a disco or so, for big audience.

9. What was your best gig (as performer or spectator)?

The most special was last summer, playing baroque pieces for a friend in our living room. I felt so much connection with the listener. The most challenging was also last summer, playing a bloody difficult and tiring piece for bass with my dear colleagues from Zafraan Ensemble Berlin.

10. How important is technology to your creative process?

Not so important and not directly, as I play acoustic bass.

11. Do you have siblings and how do they feel about your career/art?

My sister has always admired what I do. She also went for music. We support each other immensely!

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