I had a reunion with a childhood friend over Skype this past weekend, and our conversation drifted to concerts we both attended in the 1970’s at Carnegie Hall. For me, one was memorable, the other, not.
Horowitz had made a historic return to the concert stage that trumped Maurizio Pollini’s scheduled performance in the same acoustically pleasing venue. (Both served up a generous menu of Chopin selections)
Now decades later, the conversation continued about Pollini, since my East Coast friend had remained a loyal admirer of the pianist’s artistry, while I voiced my preferences for Murray Perahia, Grigory Sokolov and Vitaly Margulis. The last pianist listed, could easily have been the first, though Margulis is not widely known and therefore, not likely to amass millions of You Tube views.
Today’s West Coast communication sent East, however, was my non-verbal expression of why Margulis’s performance of Chopin’s Nocturne in Db, Op. 27 No. 2 was more touching (for me) than Pollini’s.
(Old World playing with immaculate phrasing, pacing, harmonic awakenings, and more)
To unravel the mystery surrounding Margulis, I pulled up my original blog about him.
Hopefully, his pianistic poetry will draw more listeners.