"Fliter sets her stall out from the opening bars of the first, C major, prelude, where her generous pedalling gives the music real warmth and breadth that stays just on the right side of overindulgent. But in one or two later numbers she does stray over that line – her view of the B minor’s lento assai marking is just a bit too assai for my taste, and the A major prelude that follows it seems to put its sentimentality in quotation marks. Against that is a torrential account of the B flat minor prelude, as exciting as any I’ve ever heard, and a fiercely dramatic one of the F minor, both performances that get well rewarded for the risks they take."
But even when structure is more obvious, one has to be careful. For example, Chopin sort of stands halfway between Mozart and Scriabin. Chopin has all this clarity and all the structure and all the purity, and yet if that’s all you play, if you leave out the magic, you’ve got nothing. But if you only play the magic it’s quite sickening. I mean, if you get all vaporous and emotional it’s nice for a few minutes — and then yuck. And with Scriabin, of course, it’s practically the other side of the coin."
i was making a lot of mistakes and then my archery instructor said:
“you make mistakes because you’re focusing on the target and not on your actions”
and i was like woah
thanks for giving me the best life advice i’ve ever gotten
guys just think about how applicable this is to EVERYFUCKINGTHING
What’s amazing is that both this advice (focus on your immediate actions) and its exact opposite (focus on the big-picture target goal) are equally true and equally necessary to master any skill. Wisdom is being able to hold contradictory ideas in your mind at the same time.
— Alex Ross quoting Leon Fleisher
The Sonata Seminar - The New Yorker
Alex Ross covers Leon Fleisher’s latest record in his New Yorker column this week.
Fleisher has struggled for years with focal dystonia that impairs playing with his right hand.
Here’s some Sony publicity on Levit’s new record.
Look at that room!
— Jeremy Denk, quoted in the New York Times Book Review
Today wasn’t as productive as it could have been and I should feel bad.
Don’t feel bad! I just read this post today, and I think it’s true — sometimes we need to re-evaluate our notion of progress and let ourselves recharge guilt-free.