Sanda Crăciun-Popa

Sanda Crăciun-Popa studied viola with Jeanine Costescu in highschool, then with Valeriu Pituac at the National University of Music in Bucharest. His father, Petre Crăciun, a renowned conductor and conducting teacher, opens up new perspectives on her regarding music performing and music aesthetics. Since 1973, she is member of the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra in Bucharest, having the privilege of playing in the series of concerts held by Sergiu Celibidache – a profound infuence on her. She is one of the founders and solo viola of the Quodlibet Musicum Chamber Orchestra, together with Aurelian-Octav Popa (1977). In 1980 she founded the old music ensemble Consortium Violae – with this ensemble she gave numeroud concerts, made numerous Radio and TV recordings, as well as several LPs published by Electrecord: Wonders of the Baroque, Dowland-Palestrina, The Recaptured Time (written by Myriam Marbe especially for her and for Consortium Violae).

Together with Aurelian – Octav Popa, soloist and conductor of the Constanţa Symphonic Orchestra, Sanda Crăciun-Popa played as soloist in a great tour in Germany. With this occasion, they formed an extremely appreciated duo, for which many Romanian composers have wrote works. Their first CD, Romania Today (Sonoton-München) was very successful, being republished several times and chosen as one of the best CDs of the year 1997 by DRS Switzerland. More CDs followed: Magic Musical Moments, Reversing fields, Musique des Spheres, recordings on composer profile CDs (Dan Dediu, Violeta Dinescu, Sabin Păutza). The duo is permanently invited to take part in large art exhibitions.

Sanda Crăciun-Popa teached viola as an associate professor at the Ovidius University in Constanta and at the National University of Music in Bucharest. Her repertoire covers all styles from Renaissance to contemporary music, including works written especially for her or her own viola arrangements. Since 2009 she has a PhD in Music, with the dissertation The Viola between Tradition and Inovation.

Duo with Aurelian-Octav Popa

Concerts in Bucharest and all main cities in Romania, as well as international tours.

Festivals: Musik Sommer Baden Baden – 1994/1996, Bach Festival Heidelberg – 1995/1996, Documenta X Kassel – 1999, Musik Sommer Festival MDR Lepzig – 1996, Festival des Fôrets – 1996, Musica Rara Festival Erfurt – 1996, Series of big clarinetists Lincoln Center New York – 1999,  New Jersey – 1999, Houston University – 1999, Festival do Acores – 1999, the first edition of Visual Arts Fair, Bucharest 1999, several editions of the International Week of New Music, Bucharest.

Events: special guests of the UNITER Gala (Bucharest)  in 1999; special guests of the Chamber Music Festival in Sighişoara (Romania), 2001; America Alive Gala, 2001; Artists for artists Gala, 2003;  Christmas for All Gala, the Romanian Atheneum, Bucharest, 2003; the Lucian Blaga Poetry Festival, Sebeş Alba, 2001; The Titu Maiorescu Literary Meetings,  Tescani – 2001/2002/2003; the Arfa concert series – Music, an Adventure,  Goethe Institut, Bucharest 2003.

Museum (guests): the George Enescu Museum; the National Art Museum in Romania, Bucharest; the Art Museum, Constanta; The Brancovan Palace of Mogosoaia; museums in Germany (Manheim, Baden-Baden, Frankfurt);  Casa Mateus, Portugal;  Chateau Imperial and the Franco-American Museum,  Compiègne, France.

Exhibitions of great Romanian artists (guests): Marin Gherasim, Corneliu Vasilescu, Ion and Ariana Nicodim (the „Dalla terra all’opera, la forza delle radici” exhibition, Vicenza, Padova, Mogoşoaia), Angela Tomaselli, Alin Gheorghiu, Ana Maria Smighelski, Cela Nemţu, Lucia Puşcaşu, Nicolae Flondor, Wanda Sachelarie, Bogdana Contras, Carmen Marin.

Resident artists at: the Brahms House, Baden Baden, 1996; the „George Enescu” Memorial House, Tescani (Romania), 2002; the Panaci Creative Camp, Romania 2009.

Cultural Institutes (guests): Bucharest, Paris, New York, Tel Aviv, Berlin.