The Heroine’s Journey of Mally Harpaz

What is the best thing that I love about my work? I love being creative and expressive, working on a piece of music and seeing it taking shape and coming into life is an amazing experience. I also really love playing live and feel that intense energy. I’ve been lucky to be working with incredible musicians and great friends.

What is my idea of perfect happiness? Listening to a beautiful piece of music, play and create music every day, swimming in the ocean, spending time with people I love, seeing my blind dog being full of joy and fearless running around chasing a ball, having dinner in my garden on a warm summer’s night. Slowing down to appreciate the small things and moments in life.

What is my greatest fear?  Not being able to make music for any reason, losing people I love and being in pain.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?  Insecurities

Which living persons in my profession do I most admire? Patti Smith – wonderful artist who seems to never compromise her ideas. I saw her performing Horses for its 40th anniversary and it was one of the best live shows I’ve ever been to. Anhoni, Phillip Glass, Max Richter. Any one who devotes their life to whatever they feel passionate about with courage, strength and vulnerability.

What is my greatest extravagance?  Having the opportunity to pursue what I’m most passionate about is something I feel grateful for. Percussion instruments and instruments in general, having my own studio at the back of my garden, regular massages, home grown cucumbers from the green house and booja booja chocolate.

On what occasion would I lie?  I hardly ever lie, I’m pretty bad at it. I might not volunteer the whole truth to avoid hurting someone or an unnecessary confrontation.

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?  CPU messages on Protools – any technical issues, and 4am lobby calls.

When and where was I the happiest, in my work?  I remember the first time I went on stage and played drums at the beginning of my journey as a musician, it was a little jam session in Amsterdam but I felt elated afterwards. I still get the same feeling after every good performance. When I come up with a new idea, write something that I think is beautiful or finish a piece of music and ready to let it go, and when my band with Anna (Calvi) started taking off and we made wonderful records and started playing in really beautiful places – it has been an incredible journey. Some of the moments that really stood out were supporting Grinderman on tour, playing to a full Theatre at the Trianon, Paris, and playing Meltdown with a full choir which was absolutely magical.

If I could, what would I change about myself?  Taking too much on at times, which is hard not to when you love what you do.

What is my greatest achievement in work?  I’m very proud of all the work I’ve done with Anna. Also I’m very proud of the music I composed for ‘Iconosfera’ – a video art piece by Clara Aparicio Yoldi which has won some awards and been shown in many exhibitions. Following my dream of being a musician and composer.

Where would I most like to live? I love where I live now which is in Stoke Newington. It’s very close to the centre of London which is great for its openness and wonderful mix of people and it gives me a lot of opportunities to see music, art and dance, and yet it feels like a village. It’s very peaceful, friendly and arty around here. if I had the opportunity I would like to spend more time living by the sea as well.

What is my most treasured possession? My joie de vivre, my relationships, my hard drive with all my work on it, my piano, my vintage Gretch drum kit and my old drawings.

What is my most marked characteristic? I think I’m a good listener, I’m very emotional, and I can get very passionate about things that I do – I tend to get quite obsessive when I get into something.

What is my most inspirational location, in my city? I love the Barbican Centre and the South Bank. And watching the seasons changing in my local park.

What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city?I’d say The Gate – for beautiful vegetarian food and Colebrooke Row – a really cool cocktail bar

What books influenced my life and how?One of the first books that stayed with me was the Little Prince which I first got for my 8th birthday. Growing up I loved Jonanathan Livingston Seagull. Other books that have been a part of my life in the following years were: Catcher in the Rye, Just Kids by Patti Smith it is beautiful, emotional and inspiring, Bury my heart at Wounded Knee, Primavera Con una Esquina Rota (Spring with a Broken Corner) By Mario Benedetti, Instrumental by James Rhodes, I’ve read a lot of biographies of musicians and artists, and at the moment I’m reading Walk Through Walls: A memoir by Marina Abramovic

Who are my favorite writers? Leonard Cohen, Mario Benedetti, George Orwell, Oscar Wilde

You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day? The Sound Track for Hable Con Ella (Talk to Her), Anthony and the Johnsons – I am a Bird Now, Bill Evans – Waltz for Debbie, Joan as Policewoman – Real Life, Sacco e Vanzetti, Aladdin Sane or Hunky Dory, Miles Davis, Phillip Glass, Billie Holiday – These are all records and artists that capture important moments in my life.

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction? Pippi Longstocking – she is strong, kind, open minded, imaginative and free spirited.

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?Those who dedicate their lives to change injustice and fight prejudice and those who devote their lives to art and passion. Known or unknown. Those who have the courage to push and challenge boundaries and conventions and overcome limitations and difficulties. Josephine
Baker, Nina Simone, Jimi Hendrix, David Bowie, Tilda Swinton, Daniel Barenboim, Louise Bourgeois

Which movie would i recommend to see once in a lifetime? It would really depends on the mood but these are some of the films I’ve watched many times: Almost Famous, Two days in Paris, Annie Hall, As good as it gets. Paris Texas, Koyaanisqatsi, Samsara which are visually stunning. I am Love, Chico and Rita, My Neighbor Totoro, Talk to Her, Wild at Heart, Bitter Moon

What role plays art in my life and work? I can’t imagine life without art or music. It is safety and challenge, happiness and sadness, escape and being in the moment. I think there can be art in any aspect of life and life without art would be empty and plain.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?  Anna Calvi – my musical soulmate, video artist Clara Aparicio Yoldi, James Marples, Iain Ross, Eran Karniel, Hazel Iris are all incredible artists and musicians and great friends that I’ve been working and collaborating with.

Whom would I like to work with in 2017?  I’d love to write for a dance production – my dream would be to write for Akram Kahn which I’m a big fan of, I would love to work with Anoushka Shankar, Charlotte Gainsburg, Patti Smith, and actually all the people that I’m working with at the moment.

Which people in my profession would I love to meet in 2017? Patti Smith, Max Richter, Phillip Glass

What project, in 2017, am I looking forward to work on? At the moment I’m working on an album of my own compositions which is now coming to the final stages. I’m also really looking forward to start touring again with Anna when the third album which is in the making at the moment comes out.

Where can you see me or my work in 2017? I’ll be performing my composition as part of a double bill with Hazel Iris (who I’ll also be playing drums/percussion with) on the 5th of September at the Waiting Room, Stoke Newington. I’ll be performing my own compositions live throughout the rest of the year. You’ll also be able to see me playing drums/percussion with Hazel Iris and with Ciara Clifford. A lot of video art pieces by Clara Aparicio Yoldi which I composed the music for will be showing in various exhibitions around the world.

What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me? Having passion in everything you do whilst pursuing a life that is driven by your passion

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story? Hazel Iris, Jessica Lauren

How can you contact me?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s