I started my poetic endeavours with the challenging task of translating and publishing John Keats’ poetry in Romania. That meant confronting the difficulty of transferring poems from a Germanic into a Romance language, while striving to be a translator, not a “traitor” (counteracting the Latin saying:”Tradutore - traditore.”) My poetry “happens” as an attempt at communicating thoughts or feelings by intercepting one’s similar “wavelength”. Sometimes it’s my way out of awestricken speechlessness. Some other times it’s the shortcut that my thoughts take lest they might get too entangled in prose.

Cecilia Burcescu teaches literature - university level - in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.


A Romanian Rhapsody - The Life of Conductor Sergiu Comissiona

"Life is a great teacher, and I believe that the best lesson I have mastered from life is to see the glass as half-full, and not half-empty – to take from life only the best, regardless of all the horror I have witnessed in my existence.….” Sergiu Comissiona

Compellingly written by Cecilia Burcescu, Maestro Sergiu Comissiona’s authorized biography, A Romanian Rhapsody, reveals facts about his happy childhood in a Jewish petit bourgeois family in Bucharest (then “the little Paris of Eastern Europe”), his adolescence under the Nazi specter, and his youth in repressive communist times behind the Iron Curtain. His life changes as he leaves behind the narrow horizons of communist Romania for the broad ones of the Western world, when he immigrates to Israel, later settling in England, then Sweden and, finally, the United States. The book follows chronologically and analytically his career path, from an ensemble violinist to an internationally-renowned conductor, based on his own accounts, extended research, and revealing testimonials. The Maestro’s rationale for having his biography written was, in his own words, “for the Westerners to understand my deep attachment to my Romanian roots, for the Romanians to know about my struggle for artistic affirmation in the Western world, and mostly for young conductors to realize that through passion, patience and persistence – and by not committing suicide after the first failure – the dedicated commitment to the profession bears fruit.”

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