I posed the following question to six well-regarded pianists/teachers whose responses were varied and informative. "If after you have performed a concerto, or composition many times over, or if you are learning new repertoire, or are revisiting works in your recital repertoire, will you search for other performances on the concert stage, (or by CD)… Continue reading Should pianists consult performances of others to grow their learning process?
I slipped up and missed the deadline for my end of 2017 super You Tube picks--realizing a bit late, that readers were celebrating the New Year in different time zones. Piano lovers from Japan and Australia had already popped champagne bottles 18 or so hours before those of us partook on the West Coast--And with… Continue reading Favorite you tube video picks for 2018! (carried over from 2017)
First a big congratulations to George Li, whose opening recital earned him passage to the next round. He's scheduled to play today, Sunday, June 21, at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Daylight time. (1 p.m. EDT) Li's Program: Sergei Rachmaninov. Variations on a Theme of Corelli, Op. 42 Franz Liszt. Hungarian Rhapsody No.2 in C-sharp minor, S.… Continue reading Tchaikovsky Competition, Round ONE: My favorite performers and those undeservedly overlooked who never made it to Round 2
As early Spring weather rolled into Berkeley last Sunday afternoon, I set out for Piedmont Pianos in Oakland to try out various grands, and to partake of the San Francisco Munich Trio. Friedrich Edelmann, bassoonist, and Rebecca Rust, cellist are a couple joined in marriage and music. They sometimes perform as a duo, or with… Continue reading Poignant recollections about pianists, Michelangeli and Barenboim from the Munich Philharmonic’s principal bassoonist
Over at the Piano World forums, it's the morning after selection of Cliburn Competition finalists, and many are aghast that a dynamic, soulful, and risk-taking pianist was overlooked. Here's what one poster said: "Competition winners are typically the reliable pianists somewhere in the middle when it comes to interpretation--those who don't go out on a… Continue reading Alessandro Deljavan is a Cliburn winner for me!
The word "competition" in the realm of music-making doesn't work for me. Those who serve the poetry of music and view technique, not as athletically driven, but as a means to a higher artistic end can be offended by glitzy, media-hyped productions that show young Asian, American, Russian, etc. flowers of youth posing for thumbnail… Continue reading Piano “Competitions”–Do we need them?
In the Olympiad era, bespectacled piano teachers and their students are assumed to be lockouts, pouring over eclectic music manuscripts in sheltered studios of higher learning. We're viewed as eternal bench-warmers, leading sedentary lives; practicing archaic music for hours at a time in a monastic rhythm. But these are missperceptions. Most pianists are members of… Continue reading Piano Gym: Routines that build technique (Videos)
The MTAC Baroque Festival and Daniil Trifonov's recital at Fresno State cap this weekend's events, giving our city a warm cultural embrace amidst its Bulldog-driven sports fever! First on the line-up, Claudia, 11, will play the Yamaha concert grand piano at the University's recital hall today.(The Steinway is sequestered) She'll offer two Bach selections: Invention… Continue reading A Music Packed Saturday and Sunday! (Video) and NEW PHOTOS!
It was fascinating to discover videos of pianists in their teens that hearken back to their earlier years of study. In all, a hallmark feel for the phrase and nuance highlights their performances in the past and present. In addition their heartfelt playing rises above the notes and communicates a musical passion that is unabashedly… Continue reading Piano Performance retrospectives: The seeds of greatness were sown early in life