Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 >
Topic Options
#2168739 - 10/20/13 12:43 AM October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Tonight I attended Valentina's opening night concert at 92Y in New York City, which is just a few blocks from my apartment. yippie

Did anyone else attend the concert? She posted the whole thing in a Youtube video about 15 (!) minutes after it ended, but made the video private shortly afterwards.

I will probably be posting a review later on this thread, so look out for that if you're interested.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
Ad 800 (Pearl River)
Pearl River World's Best Selling Piano
#2168747 - 10/20/13 01:01 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
frenchflip Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 107
Loc: New York, NY
I attended as well. Pretty good showing and interesting Shostakovich commentary. Until she was rudely interrupted, that is. Only thing- seven Chopin nocturnes in succession was a bit much. Nevertheless, very happy I went.

Top
#2168748 - 10/20/13 01:05 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: frenchflip]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
I attended as well. Pretty good showing and interesting Shostakovich commentary. Until she was rudely interrupted, that is.

Ah yes - that woman in the back. "Why is she talking? She's supposed to be playing!" ha Valentina took it into stride, though. grin

Originally Posted By: frenchflip
Only thing- seven Chopin nocturnes in succession was a bit much.

Eight. grin And not played quite to my taste. Still, an interesting program.

She got quite a reaction with the second encore, didn't she?
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2168752 - 10/20/13 01:28 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
frenchflip Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 107
Loc: New York, NY
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
I attended as well. Pretty good showing and interesting Shostakovich commentary. Until she was rudely interrupted, that is.

Ah yes - that woman in the back. "Why is she talking? She's supposed to be playing!" ha Valentina took it into stride, though. grin

Originally Posted By: frenchflip
Only thing- seven Chopin nocturnes in succession was a bit much.

Eight. grin And not played quite to my taste. Still, an interesting program.

She got quite a reaction with the second encore, didn't she?


Yes, eight, my mistake ... and I agree with you on the interpretation. Her Chopin has never much moved me, though. Stiff might not be the right word, but something ... anemic about it. With her style of playing, I venture she might do better with a scherzo, though even those have their hyper-Romantic moments, e.g., the "B" section of op. 20.

La Campanella did arouse quite the response! An always-smart encore, IMHO. I was happy to hear it.

Top
#2168754 - 10/20/13 01:36 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: frenchflip]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
I attended as well. Pretty good showing and interesting Shostakovich commentary. Until she was rudely interrupted, that is.

Ah yes - that woman in the back. "Why is she talking? She's supposed to be playing!" ha Valentina took it into stride, though. grin

Originally Posted By: frenchflip
Only thing- seven Chopin nocturnes in succession was a bit much.

Eight. grin And not played quite to my taste. Still, an interesting program.

She got quite a reaction with the second encore, didn't she?


Yes, eight, my mistake ... and I agree with you on the interpretation. Her Chopin has never much moved me, though. Stiff might not be the right word, but something ... anemic about it. With her style of playing, I venture she might do better with a scherzo, though even those have their hyper-Romantic moments, e.g., the "B" section of op. 20.

Her persistent asychronization is one of the main problems for me - yes, it's okay to do it sometimes, but is it ALWAYS necessary to have the RH drag behind the LH? On every single note? Also, her Chopin playing lacks in color and shape because she tends to disregard inner voices. This is also a problem when she plays Rachmaninoff - for example, in the E flat major prelude, which I think she just misunderstands. More on this later.

The Campanella was played quite well, especially considering that I think she decided to play it on the spot, with no pre-concert preparation. Her Liszt is her strongpoint. I wish she had played the B minor Ballade though. Speaking of which, what did you think of the rather strange procedure of having fans vote on the program, and then even on the encore (incidentally, did you see that the voting was open all the way through intermission? It was one of the program inserts).
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2168782 - 10/20/13 04:30 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
TwoSnowflakes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/12
Posts: 1222
I was there!

I didn't like all of her interpretations, but there's just something exciting about watching someone who is so excited about playing!

Are thumbnails clacking on keys a necessary part of descending glissandos?
_________________________
Currently:
Bach, French Suites, No. 3 BWV 814
Brahms, Op. 118 No. 2 Intermezzo A major
Chopin, Mazurka Op. 67 No.4
With the pedal I love to meddle; When Paderewski comes this way... -Irving Berlin

Top
#2168786 - 10/20/13 04:45 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
TwoSnowflakes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/12
Posts: 1222
Quote:
The Campanella was played quite well, especially considering that I think she decided to play it on the spot, with no pre-concert preparation.


Not that this should diminish it in any way, but she has said in the past that since Campanella was one of her competition pieces and because of when and how she learned this and certain other competition pieces, she can simply produce one at any moment.

As for me, I can only vaguely envision a world in which pieces like that are in my list of "auto-pilot" pieces.
_________________________
Currently:
Bach, French Suites, No. 3 BWV 814
Brahms, Op. 118 No. 2 Intermezzo A major
Chopin, Mazurka Op. 67 No.4
With the pedal I love to meddle; When Paderewski comes this way... -Irving Berlin

Top
#2168804 - 10/20/13 07:13 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: TwoSnowflakes
Quote:
The Campanella was played quite well, especially considering that I think she decided to play it on the spot, with no pre-concert preparation.


Not that this should diminish it in any way, but she has said in the past that since Campanella was one of her competition pieces and because of when and how she learned this and certain other competition pieces, she can simply produce one at any moment.

As for me, I can only vaguely envision a world in which pieces like that are in my list of "auto-pilot" pieces.


In a way, auto-pilot is the only way La Camp. can be played. It's certainly not one of Liszt's best pieces, and not terribly interesting as music. It is both telling and somewhat sad that it has attained the status it has among pianists, IMO. To me, being present when a pianist plays it is quite a lot like watching certain circus acts - they may be surprising, but one quickly realizes it is all about endless training and little else.

Top
#2168809 - 10/20/13 07:38 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: wr

In a way, auto-pilot is the only way La Camp. can be played. It's certainly not one of Liszt's best pieces, and not terribly interesting as music. It is both telling and somewhat sad that it has attained the status it has among pianists, IMO. To me, being present when a pianist plays it is quite a lot like watching certain circus acts - they may be surprising, but one quickly realizes it is all about endless training and little else.


Music should thrill and entertain, as well as move people grin .

Otherwise, classical music would be mainly slow, serious stuff, shorn of all the extra notes and figurations that spice it up. Even old JSB wrote a lengthy and brilliant cadenza (which can seem somewhat out of place in context...) for himself to play in his Brandenburg Concerto No.5, and every great composer ever since have composed brilliant (even unnecessarily brilliant) pieces for keyboard/piano whose main purpose is to entertain by showing off the soloist's pyrotechnics.

La Campanella is one of the more superior pieces in this genre, and in the right hands - like Lisitsa's - it has the power to entertain. And thrill.

Just like great acrobatic feats in circus acts, and in gymnastics and diving in the Olympics........ wink
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2168827 - 10/20/13 08:43 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: wr

In a way, auto-pilot is the only way La Camp. can be played. It's certainly not one of Liszt's best pieces, and not terribly interesting as music. It is both telling and somewhat sad that it has attained the status it has among pianists, IMO. To me, being present when a pianist plays it is quite a lot like watching certain circus acts - they may be surprising, but one quickly realizes it is all about endless training and little else.


Music should thrill and entertain, as well as move people grin .

Otherwise, classical music would be mainly slow, serious stuff, shorn of all the extra notes and figurations that spice it up. Even old JSB wrote a lengthy and brilliant cadenza (which can seem somewhat out of place in context...) for himself to play in his Brandenburg Concerto No.5, and every great composer ever since have composed brilliant (even unnecessarily brilliant) pieces for keyboard/piano whose main purpose is to entertain by showing off the soloist's pyrotechnics.

La Campanella is one of the more superior pieces in this genre, and in the right hands - like Lisitsa's - it has the power to entertain. And thrill.

Just like great acrobatic feats in circus acts, and in gymnastics and diving in the Olympics........ wink


Sorry, no sale.

I thoroughly enjoy virtuosic entertainment in classical music, when it is of decent musical quality. But this piece is, IMO, far from being "one of the more superior [sic] pieces in the genre". The tune is utterly banal, and the virtuosic figuration is of little musical interest in itself. It's rather like one of the gazillion sets of virtuoso "Carnival of Venice" variations that exist for various wind instruments - basically, there is not much music involved, and I find exhibition of rote learning of little interest.

Top
#2168847 - 10/20/13 09:38 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
TwoSnowflakes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/12
Posts: 1222
I just thought it was interesting that even though Liszt wrote a piece called Dance of the Dead, when you put it on a program with the Shostakovich sonata, it's pretty apparent which composer liked exploring macabre themes, and which composer lived it. Todenanz may sound funereal, but that sonata is funereal. *shudder*
_________________________
Currently:
Bach, French Suites, No. 3 BWV 814
Brahms, Op. 118 No. 2 Intermezzo A major
Chopin, Mazurka Op. 67 No.4
With the pedal I love to meddle; When Paderewski comes this way... -Irving Berlin

Top
#2168862 - 10/20/13 10:13 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: wr
The tune is utterly banal, and the virtuosic figuration is of little musical interest in itself. It's rather like one of the gazillion sets of virtuoso "Carnival of Venice" variations that exist for various wind instruments - basically, there is not much music involved, and I find exhibition of rote learning of little interest.



OK then, maybe you might like the original a little better wink :

http://youtu.be/cTMZASKc9dc
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2168939 - 10/20/13 01:35 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19335
Loc: New York City
I think La Campanella is an incredibly brilliantly written etude on a level with most of the other Paganini Etudes or Transcendental Etudes.

Top
#2168943 - 10/20/13 01:44 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
My Lisitsa concert thread has turned into a squabble about the musical quality of La Campanella. Oh well.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2168978 - 10/20/13 03:00 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
frenchflip Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 107
Loc: New York, NY
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
I attended as well. Pretty good showing and interesting Shostakovich commentary. Until she was rudely interrupted, that is.

Ah yes - that woman in the back. "Why is she talking? She's supposed to be playing!" ha Valentina took it into stride, though. grin

Originally Posted By: frenchflip
Only thing- seven Chopin nocturnes in succession was a bit much.

Eight. grin And not played quite to my taste. Still, an interesting program.

She got quite a reaction with the second encore, didn't she?


Yes, eight, my mistake ... and I agree with you on the interpretation. Her Chopin has never much moved me, though. Stiff might not be the right word, but something ... anemic about it. With her style of playing, I venture she might do better with a scherzo, though even those have their hyper-Romantic moments, e.g., the "B" section of op. 20.

Her persistent asychronization is one of the main problems for me - yes, it's okay to do it sometimes, but is it ALWAYS necessary to have the RH drag behind the LH? On every single note? Also, her Chopin playing lacks in color and shape because she tends to disregard inner voices. This is also a problem when she plays Rachmaninoff - for example, in the E flat major prelude, which I think she just misunderstands. More on this later.

The Campanella was played quite well, especially considering that I think she decided to play it on the spot, with no pre-concert preparation. Her Liszt is her strongpoint. I wish she had played the B minor Ballade though. Speaking of which, what did you think of the rather strange procedure of having fans vote on the program, and then even on the encore (incidentally, did you see that the voting was open all the way through intermission? It was one of the program inserts).



I am no enemy of asynch, but must admit it can become excessive. Like many things, if used ad infinitum, it can be tiresome. Reminds me of the discussion on another thread about arpeggiating virtually all chords ... IMO this is even more tiring to listen to, authenticity notwithstanding.

I enjoyed the voting process. It adds a bit of democracy to the classical music experience, lest anyone find it to be elitist (I don't). Plus, media consumption is all about participation these days, no? If it is kept to voting between a selection of balanced programs, vs. voting piece by piece, I think it can be effective and am all for it.

I did notice the program insert about the encore, but also saw earlier in the afternoon her Facebook post that Ave Maria would be played as it had 40% of the vote. Her FB post also implored us to vote for the second encore via Twitter during her performance of the first encore. This I'm not a fan of.

Overall, a wonderful experience to be able to see her perform live. It does make a difference as TS mentioned.

Top
#2168980 - 10/20/13 03:03 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: frenchflip]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
did notice the program insert about the encore, but also saw earlier in the afternoon her Facebook post that Ave Maria would be played as it had 40% of the vote. Her FB post also implored us to vote for the second encore via Twitter during her performance of the first encore. This I'm not a fan of.

I wish she had played the 2nd Ballade. But I guess more people went for the popular pieces - Ave Maria and the Rondo El Contrabandista.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2169010 - 10/20/13 04:29 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: pianoloverus]
slipperykeys Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/12
Posts: 375
Loc: Dorset, England
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
I think La Campanella is an incredibly brilliantly written etude on a level with most of the other Paganini Etudes or Transcendental Etudes.


+1

(A shallow tribute, but it agrees with you 100% all the same!)

Top
#2169018 - 10/20/13 04:36 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
slipperykeys Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/12
Posts: 375
Loc: Dorset, England
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
My Lisitsa concert thread has turned into a squabble about the musical quality of La Campanella. Oh well.


That may be so, but I think the popularity of the work is virtually down to Ms Lisitsa alone, so perhaps it is fitting that such a work is discussed regarding her.

I saw a Paul Barton post on You Tube where he said that he would produce a tutorial on it because it was very popular because of, "You Tube performances" and I thought straight away that it was a (slightly begrudging) reference to VL and her internet power.

She played in Poole, Dorset a couple of weeks ago, I live in Weymouth 20 miles away and I MISSED HER!!!

Jealous as heck of everybody who goes to her concerts.

Top
#2169130 - 10/20/13 09:05 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Andromaque Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/08
Posts: 3886
Loc: New York
I am not a Lisitsa fan, so I skipped this recital. But the Y has an excellent line-up of pianists and programs coming up: Olga Kern who will play Rachmaninoff and Alkan, Yefim Bronfman who will play chamber music and a new work for solo piano by E-P Salonen titled Sisar, and Peter Serkin whose program is quite literally new:

SWEELINCK: Capriccio
WUORINEN: Intrada (New York premiere, 92Y co-commission)
WUORINEN: Scherzo (92Y commission)
WUORINEN: Adagio (92Y co-commission)
BEETHOVEN: Six Bagatelles, Op. 126
BEETHOVEN: Sonata in E-flat major, Op. 81a, “Les Adieux”

Most exciting and an upcoming performance that I cannot recommend enough is the Isserlis-Denk duo, who will treat us to the Chopin, Martinu and Franck sonatas. A true treat to the ear and mind.

By the way, Tommasini has a rather negative review of Lisitsa's performance. In addition to comments pertaining to the music, he thought that she was ungracious about the program notes presented in the concert booklet when reciting her own version.

Here is an excerpt of his review (just posted online, I believe):

n a group of eight Chopin nocturnes, she was frustratingly uneven, sometimes playing with poetic lyricism, sometimes turning assertive and unruly. Ending with Liszt’s demonic and stunningly difficult “Totentanz” (“Dance of Death”), she pummeled the piece into submission with little feeling for the mystical realms the composer explores in this wildly experimental work.

Ms. Lisitsa left it to her online audience to select her encore from among nine options. Some 5,000 voted. The winner was Liszt’s arrangement of Schubert’s “Ave Maria.” But at the end of this long evening, she played another Liszt favorite: “La Campanella,” a riff on Paganini, dispatched with wondrous lightness but at a breathless tempo that robbed the piece of its playfulness.

Ms. Lisitsa’s fans waited in a winding line to have her autograph recordings afterward. But she had better start preparing her own program notes. After this recital, no writer is going to want that thankless job.

Top
#2169139 - 10/20/13 09:21 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: slipperykeys]
Kuanpiano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 2140
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: slipperykeys
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
My Lisitsa concert thread has turned into a squabble about the musical quality of La Campanella. Oh well.


That may be so, but I think the popularity of the work is virtually down to Ms Lisitsa alone, so perhaps it is fitting that such a work is discussed regarding her.

I don't think this is the case.

Pianists like Yundi Li, Lang Lang, and even Evgeny Kissin have been playing this as an encore for years, and with many many youtube videos being posted, long before VL started becoming popular.

I once had an acquaintance, who didn't play piano at all, ask me to play this piece once I mentioned that I played the piano....and that was in 2008!
_________________________
Working on:
Chopin - Andante Spianato and Grande Polonaise Brillante
Rachmaninoff - Preludes op. 23 nos. 3,4,6, op. 32 no.12
Franck - Violin Sonata

Top
#2169151 - 10/20/13 09:49 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Andromaque]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Andromaque
I am not a Lisitsa fan, so I skipped this recital. But the Y has an excellent line-up of pianists and programs coming up: Olga Kern who will play Rachmaninoff and Alkan, Yefim Bronfman who will play chamber music and a new work for solo piano by E-P Salonen titled Sisar, and Peter Serkin whose program is quite literally new:

SWEELINCK: Capriccio
WUORINEN: Intrada (New York premiere, 92Y co-commission)
WUORINEN: Scherzo (92Y commission)
WUORINEN: Adagio (92Y co-commission)
BEETHOVEN: Six Bagatelles, Op. 126
BEETHOVEN: Sonata in E-flat major, Op. 81a, “Les Adieux”

Most exciting and an upcoming performance that I cannot recommend enough is the Isserlis-Denk duo, who will treat us to the Chopin, Martinu and Franck sonatas. A true treat to the ear and mind.

By the way, Tommasini has a rather negative review of Lisitsa's performance. In addition to comments pertaining to the music, he thought that she was ungracious about the program notes presented in the concert booklet when reciting her own version.

Here is an excerpt of his review (just posted online, I believe):

n a group of eight Chopin nocturnes, she was frustratingly uneven, sometimes playing with poetic lyricism, sometimes turning assertive and unruly. Ending with Liszt’s demonic and stunningly difficult “Totentanz” (“Dance of Death”), she pummeled the piece into submission with little feeling for the mystical realms the composer explores in this wildly experimental work.

Ms. Lisitsa left it to her online audience to select her encore from among nine options. Some 5,000 voted. The winner was Liszt’s arrangement of Schubert’s “Ave Maria.” But at the end of this long evening, she played another Liszt favorite: “La Campanella,” a riff on Paganini, dispatched with wondrous lightness but at a breathless tempo that robbed the piece of its playfulness.

Ms. Lisitsa’s fans waited in a winding line to have her autograph recordings afterward. But she had better start preparing her own program notes. After this recital, no writer is going to want that thankless job.

For anyone interested in reading the full review, here it is.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2169198 - 10/20/13 11:43 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: slipperykeys]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: slipperykeys
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
My Lisitsa concert thread has turned into a squabble about the musical quality of La Campanella. Oh well.


That may be so, but I think the popularity of the work is virtually down to Ms Lisitsa alone, so perhaps it is fitting that such a work is discussed regarding her.



Once again reinforcing the impression I have that Lisitsa fans in general are relatively naive when it comes to the world of classical piano.

ArkivMusic lists 85 recordings of it as a standalone piece, separate from complete versions of the Paganini etudes. Add in the complete sets and it's an even higher number. So, no, the popularity of it is not remotely close to being due to Lisitsa.

Top
#2169282 - 10/21/13 07:41 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Andromaque]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Andromaque
I am not a Lisitsa fan, so I skipped this recital. But the Y has an excellent line-up of pianists and programs coming up: Olga Kern who will play Rachmaninoff and Alkan, Yefim Bronfman who will play chamber music and a new work for solo piano by E-P Salonen titled Sisar, and Peter Serkin whose program is quite literally new:

SWEELINCK: Capriccio
WUORINEN: Intrada (New York premiere, 92Y co-commission)
WUORINEN: Scherzo (92Y commission)
WUORINEN: Adagio (92Y co-commission)
BEETHOVEN: Six Bagatelles, Op. 126
BEETHOVEN: Sonata in E-flat major, Op. 81a, “Les Adieux”

Most exciting and an upcoming performance that I cannot recommend enough is the Isserlis-Denk duo, who will treat us to the Chopin, Martinu and Franck sonatas. A true treat to the ear and mind.

By the way, Tommasini has a rather negative review of Lisitsa's performance. In addition to comments pertaining to the music, he thought that she was ungracious about the program notes presented in the concert booklet when reciting her own version.

Here is an excerpt of his review (just posted online, I believe):

n a group of eight Chopin nocturnes, she was frustratingly uneven, sometimes playing with poetic lyricism, sometimes turning assertive and unruly. Ending with Liszt’s demonic and stunningly difficult “Totentanz” (“Dance of Death”), she pummeled the piece into submission with little feeling for the mystical realms the composer explores in this wildly experimental work.

Ms. Lisitsa left it to her online audience to select her encore from among nine options. Some 5,000 voted. The winner was Liszt’s arrangement of Schubert’s “Ave Maria.” But at the end of this long evening, she played another Liszt favorite: “La Campanella,” a riff on Paganini, dispatched with wondrous lightness but at a breathless tempo that robbed the piece of its playfulness.

Ms. Lisitsa’s fans waited in a winding line to have her autograph recordings afterward. But she had better start preparing her own program notes. After this recital, no writer is going to want that thankless job.


Tommasini, poor soul, must be envious of Lisitsa.

</sarcasm off>

Thanks for the mention that Kern is playing some Alkan (it will be some of the op. 35 etudes, although they don't say which ones). It is still quite unusual to have a fairly well-known pianist like her playing his music in concert. I think that's great, and hope to see it happening more often.

Top
#2169562 - 10/21/13 02:57 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
TimV Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/21/11
Posts: 69
Loc: New York, NY
I have a sort of funny story about Valentina's Saturday Night recital. I was meeting some friends for a very early dinner on the Upper East Side before ambling over to the 92nd St Y.

I got on the uptown 4 train out in Brooklyn, pulled out my kindle and started reading. At some point in very lower Manhattan I saw some people get on and sit right next to me. I didn't look up, but I noticed a woman wearing bright orange skirt, and a young kid (maybe 5-6 years old) wearing orange pants. "Wow, that's a lot of orange for one family" I thought to myself without looking up. Anyway, somewhere around Grand Central I looked over and Orange Skirt Lady was none other than Valentina Lisitsa. This must have been around 5PM. I guess they had been out sightseeing, and were probably heading back up to their hotel to have dinner and get ready for the evening. Without staring, I tried to verify my first impression. Enormous Piano Hands: check. Closely cropped Piano Fingernails: check. Then her still-standing husband said something in russian (Ukrainian, I know): check. Then she responded in her fairly distinctive voice: check.

I decided not to say anything to her. She probably wondered why the creepy guy with kindle kept giving sidelong glances at her. I don't know, I feel a little bit of regret not at least acknowledging that I knew who she was and wished her good luck. Or to break a finger, or whatever superstitious thing I should say. The fact is though, even if it were any another recognizable classical musician sitting next to me on the subway, I probably still wouldn't say anything.

I realize it's not like she's like an A-list film or TV star. Maybe she would have appreciated that some random dude on the subway recognized her and was in fact on his way to her recital. But the other part of me felt like it might be intrusive on her personal space with her family in a place where personal space is a precious commodity.

What would you have done?

Also, are there any A-List classical music celebrities? I feel like the general population would have recognized Leonard Bernstein, but that's probably it. Gustavo Dudamel?
_________________________
--------------------------
Bach WTC 1 #7
Brahms Op 76 #1, Op 118 #5
Debussy Suite Bergamasque

Top
#2169583 - 10/21/13 03:38 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
frenchflip Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 107
Loc: New York, NY
Great story, Tim! She's very down to earth, which is something I've always liked about her. We probably would never have seen Horowitz in that subterranean tunnel for the masses!

Tommasini was a bit hard on Valentina, IMHO ... she deserves more respect. I think the "unevenness" in the nocturnes was just a matter of her interpretation, not a reflection of technical prowess. Many have noted (my self included) that Chopin nocturnes are probably not her strong card to begin with.

Top
#2169606 - 10/21/13 04:09 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
I would have smiled and simply said that "I'm looking forward to you recital tonight."

Opera singers usually gather the most face recognition.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2169635 - 10/21/13 05:01 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: TimV]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: TimV

I realize it's not like she's like an A-list film or TV star. Maybe she would have appreciated that some random dude on the subway recognized her and was in fact on his way to her recital. But the other part of me felt like it might be intrusive on her personal space with her family in a place where personal space is a precious commodity.

What would you have done?

Also, are there any A-List classical music celebrities? I feel like the general population would have recognized Leonard Bernstein, but that's probably it. Gustavo Dudamel?

Lisitsa would definitely have appreciated you showing that you recognized her and would be attending her concert.

When I saw her in the Yamaha/Bösendorfer showroom in London last year practising for her RAH concert, she asked the small audience (who sat themselves at a respectful distance) to come right up to sit almost beside her while she was playing. And she chatted to everyone afterwards.
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2169672 - 10/21/13 05:46 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
The Hound Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/17/11
Posts: 124
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: TimV

I realize it's not like she's like an A-list film or TV star. Maybe she would have appreciated that some random dude on the subway recognized her and was in fact on his way to her recital. But the other part of me felt like it might be intrusive on her personal space with her family in a place where personal space is a precious commodity.

What would you have done?

Also, are there any A-List classical music celebrities? I feel like the general population would have recognized Leonard Bernstein, but that's probably it. Gustavo Dudamel?

Lisitsa would definitely have appreciated you showing that you recognized her and would be attending her concert.

When I saw her in the Yamaha/Bösendorfer showroom in London last year practising for her RAH concert, she asked the small audience (who sat themselves at a respectful distance) to come right up to sit almost beside her while she was playing. And she chatted to everyone afterwards.


Hey, bennevis - are you referring to the Chappells showroom? I was there, too! Unless she was there more than once, but I certainly remember her telling people to come and sit closer if they wanted. She seemed very gracious and not at all self-important or anything.

You weren't the guy who told me who she was when I came in and sat down by the door, were you? I wanted to respond that I knew and that was why I'd popped in, but I thought I'd just shut up and listen instead.

As for her playing, I find it a mixed bag. She has a very strong technique and a beautiful touch, but some of her interpretations I find a bit brusque while others she seems to nail.

Originally Posted By: TimV

Also, are there any A-List classical music celebrities? I feel like the general population would have recognized Leonard Bernstein, but that's probably it. Gustavo Dudamel?


If you're defining celebrity as someone most people would recognise, then I'd say no, there aren't, unless you include singers (Pavarotti springing immediately to mind).

Maybe Nigel Kennedy in the past, or at a push Lang Lang. But generally, I don't feel like there are any classical music superstars whose fame transcends genres.


Edited by The Hound (10/21/13 05:51 PM)

Top
#2169689 - 10/21/13 06:17 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: The Hound]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: The Hound

You weren't the guy who told me who she was when I came in and sat down by the door, were you? I wanted to respond that I knew and that was why I'd popped in, but I thought I'd just shut up and listen instead.

As for her playing, I find it a mixed bag. She has a very strong technique and a beautiful touch, but some of her interpretations I find a bit brusque while others she seems to nail.

......Nigel Kennedy in the past, or at a push Lang Lang. But generally, I don't feel like there are any classical music superstars whose fame transcends genres.

Yes, it was Chappells. No, it wasn't me - I got there a bit late, because it was a last-minute decision. And I was glad I did go, as she treated us to the whole RAH concert and then some....

I was pretty impressed by her playing as well as by her unstuffy demeanour - she told me that she'd rented a flat in London which had a Bechstein piano, on which she'd be doing most of her practicing for the forthcoming concert. And that the Bösendorfer Imperial she'd be playing on had to make the long journey by road from Hannover and due to arrive only on the day of the concert. When I told her that I'd heard pianists including Lang Lang, Evgeny Kissin, András Schiff and Maria João Pires give solo recitals in the RAH before, she asked me what the acoustics were like, worried that the piano wouldn't arrive at the RAH in time for her to get used to it and the vast space of the RAH.

Like almost every pianist, her playing won't be to everyone's taste in everything she plays, but what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship. BTW, Peter Donohoe included her in his '50 Great Pianists' in his series of programmes for BBC Radio 3's Piano Season last year.

You're right, classical superstars are insignificant among the hoi polloi. But I suppose that the latest 'pop sensations' (like 'One Direction' - is that correct?) don't figure in the classical enthusiast's consciousness either. Just that there are far, far, far more of the hoi polloi than there are of us...... cry


Edited by bennevis (10/21/13 06:27 PM)
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2169722 - 10/21/13 07:27 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
Orange Soda King Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6070
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
Originally Posted By: wr

Thanks for the mention that Kern is playing some Alkan (it will be some of the op. 35 etudes, although they don't say which ones). It is still quite unusual to have a fairly well-known pianist like her playing his music in concert. I think that's great, and hope to see it happening more often.


I agree. I'm very interested to hear that. Yeol Eum Son plays Le Festin d'Esope now, and multiple Cliburn characters have Alkan in their repertoire.

Top
#2169729 - 10/21/13 07:45 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Like almost every pianist, her playing won't be to everyone's taste in everything she plays, but what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship.


I think her musicianship is very much in question.

Top
#2169732 - 10/21/13 07:50 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: frenchflip]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: frenchflip


Tommasini was a bit hard on Valentina, IMHO ... she deserves more respect.


Maybe you are not quite clear about a critic's job? It is not about some kind of "respect" for simply being able to play the notes.

Top
#2169743 - 10/21/13 08:18 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Like almost every pianist, her playing won't be to everyone's taste in everything she plays, but what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship.


I think her musicianship is very much in question.

Who by - just you? And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2169770 - 10/21/13 09:42 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Like almost every pianist, her playing won't be to everyone's taste in everything she plays, but what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship.


I think her musicianship is very much in question.

Who by - just you? And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


You can include me in that group.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


Top
#2169798 - 10/21/13 10:49 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: stores]
Orange Soda King Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6070
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Like almost every pianist, her playing won't be to everyone's taste in everything she plays, but what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship.


I think her musicianship is very much in question.

Who by - just you? And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


You can include me in that group.


Me too. I know it's not really a good thing to compare artists, but try listening to Rubinstein or Cherkassky play the D Flat Nocturne, then Lisitsa.

Also, compare her La Campanella to, oh I don't know, maybe de Larrocha, who convinces me that La Campanella IS a fine concert etude that is satisfying enough musically for its purposes, and quite thrilling.

Top
#2169808 - 10/21/13 11:19 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Orange Soda King]
sophial Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 3465
Loc: US
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Like almost every pianist, her playing won't be to everyone's taste in everything she plays, but what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship.


I think her musicianship is very much in question.

Who by - just you? And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


You can include me in that group.


Me too. I know it's not really a good thing to compare artists, but try listening to Rubinstein or Cherkassky play the D Flat Nocturne, then Lisitsa.

Also, compare her La Campanella to, oh I don't know, maybe de Larrocha, who convinces me that La Campanella IS a fine concert etude that is satisfying enough musically for its purposes, and quite thrilling.


At the risk of piling on, you can add me to the group.

Top
#2169810 - 10/21/13 11:22 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: sophial]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: sophial
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Like almost every pianist, her playing won't be to everyone's taste in everything she plays, but what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship.


I think her musicianship is very much in question.

Who by - just you? And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


You can include me in that group.


Me too. I know it's not really a good thing to compare artists, but try listening to Rubinstein or Cherkassky play the D Flat Nocturne, then Lisitsa.

Also, compare her La Campanella to, oh I don't know, maybe de Larrocha, who convinces me that La Campanella IS a fine concert etude that is satisfying enough musically for its purposes, and quite thrilling.


At the risk of piling on, you can add me to the group.

And me. grin
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2169833 - 10/22/13 12:37 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Pogorelich. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 4528
Loc: in the past
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: sophial
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: wr


I think her musicianship is very much in question.

Who by - just you? And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


You can include me in that group.


Me too. I know it's not really a good thing to compare artists, but try listening to Rubinstein or Cherkassky play the D Flat Nocturne, then Lisitsa.

Also, compare her La Campanella to, oh I don't know, maybe de Larrocha, who convinces me that La Campanella IS a fine concert etude that is satisfying enough musically for its purposes, and quite thrilling.


At the risk of piling on, you can add me to the group.

And me. grin


Me too.

But, I do admire a lot of what she does - just the sheer repertoire she keeps all the time, I wish I could do that. And the ease she plays with. I always struggle with everything in the beginning..
_________________________

'I want to invest my emotions only in music; it will never disappoint me or hurt me - it is a safe place to be.'

Top
#2169881 - 10/22/13 04:59 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Pogorelich.]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: sophial
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
Originally Posted By: stores

You can include me in that group.


Me too. I know it's not really a good thing to compare artists, but try listening to Rubinstein or Cherkassky play the D Flat Nocturne, then Lisitsa.

Also, compare her La Campanella to, oh I don't know, maybe de Larrocha, who convinces me that La Campanella IS a fine concert etude that is satisfying enough musically for its purposes, and quite thrilling.


At the risk of piling on, you can add me to the group.

And me. grin


Me too.

But, I do admire a lot of what she does - just the sheer repertoire she keeps all the time, I wish I could do that. And the ease she plays with. I always struggle with everything in the beginning..

Wow!!

And I thought this thread was for Lisitsa's fan club.... wink
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2169918 - 10/22/13 08:21 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Ken Knapp Offline



Registered: 04/18/06
Posts: 2234
Loc: Pennsylvania
Monday morning quarterbacking...

I think I'll ask Frank Baxter to add another forum to Piano World. We can call it, "The Gong Show".
_________________________
Ken

Piano Organ Depot
http://www.pianoorgandepot.com
Hammond Organ Technician
http://www.tonewheeltech.com
Vice President - MITA, International
http://www.mitatechs.org
http://www.facebook.com/MITATechs

Top
#2169934 - 10/22/13 08:57 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13789
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Wow!!

And I thought this thread was for Lisitsa's fan club.... wink


I wish it were! I like Lisitsa very much. She's a wonderful pianist and has done amazing things to promote our art to a wider public. Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.

It's also proof of how much easier it is to cut someone down than build someone up. If some of these people really cared about the art they profess to care so much about, they'd spend more time promoting what they like instead of taking the low easy road criticizing what they don't.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

Top
#2169976 - 10/22/13 10:36 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
Damon Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/22/06
Posts: 6144
Loc: St. Louis area
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: sophial
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
Originally Posted By: stores

You can include me in that group.


Me too. I know it's not really a good thing to compare artists, but try listening to Rubinstein or Cherkassky play the D Flat Nocturne, then Lisitsa.

Also, compare her La Campanella to, oh I don't know, maybe de Larrocha, who convinces me that La Campanella IS a fine concert etude that is satisfying enough musically for its purposes, and quite thrilling.


At the risk of piling on, you can add me to the group.

And me. grin


Me too.

But, I do admire a lot of what she does - just the sheer repertoire she keeps all the time, I wish I could do that. And the ease she plays with. I always struggle with everything in the beginning..

Wow!!

And I thought this thread was for Lisitsa's fan club.... wink


I like her, even if I don't agree with all her musical choices. I don't know of an artist where I do.
_________________________
It's been scientifically proven that Horowitz sucks.

Top
#2169999 - 10/22/13 11:28 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13789
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I never think about my own choices when listening to others. I listen to their choices - it's how I grow and remain inspired.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

Top
#2170003 - 10/22/13 11:32 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
evamar Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/02/12
Posts: 541
Loc: Spanish living in UK
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Wow!!

And I thought this thread was for Lisitsa's fan club.... wink


I wish it were! I like Lisitsa very much. She's a wonderful pianist and has done amazing things to promote our art to a wider public. Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.

It's also proof of how much easier it is to cut someone down than build someone up. If some of these people really cared about the art they profess to care so much about, they'd spend more time promoting what they like instead of taking the low easy road criticizing what they don't.


Personally I really like how she connects with the piano so easily, and she is one of the reasons I took the decision to learn piano, she makes it look so effortlessly! It is not!!! smile

I like that she doesn't stick to the sheet music and there's always something new to listen to. I cannot say that she is the greatest performer alive or anything like that, among other reasons because musically I'm extremely ignorant. But I do like her because I cannot see just somebody hitting keys as they are expected to do, she can connect with the public and transmit feelings, which many performers cannot.

I really would love to be able to one day play ONE piece the day she does... but I'm sure that my fingers will give up to arthritis or whatever before I manage to do that!

I cannot see a lot of "famous" performers doing this on the streets and stations, great way of getting people into music!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1D2lPocwncs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qho0KhaE1Cc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YTAFIwhmDN8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5et8SKcddi8

Completely unexpected, unfamiliar piano, lots of people around, cameras on her face... well done!
_________________________
Serious since Dec 2013. March 2014, Kawai CA95!

Time you enjoy wasting was not wasted



Top
#2170009 - 10/22/13 11:43 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Orange Soda King Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6070
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
According to this link http://chopinsociety.org/ola-kern.html

Kern is going to play Op. 35, nos. 3 and 4. At least in that specific concert. Maybe she has others, too. I'm very interested to hear those, especially. I bet her tremolos in No. 4 will be amazingly light, effortless, and, well, FAST. ha

Top
#2170013 - 10/22/13 11:48 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Orange Soda King]
Tararex Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/27/11
Posts: 408
Loc: Middle Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King

Me too. I know it's not really a good thing to compare artists, but try listening to Rubinstein or Cherkassky play the D Flat Nocturne, then Lisitsa.


I did. I find her interpretation considerably more valid than most. Chopin's music is too often (almost always) manipulated with such overwrought, overcooked and over-melodramatic styling as to be rendered non-listenable. It's lovely to hear a poetic, intimate, salon presentation. I suspect Chopin would have been appalled at the tear-jerking dampness applied to his works these last two centuries.
_________________________

Top
#2170023 - 10/22/13 12:06 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
Brendan Offline



Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 5308
Loc: McAllen, TX
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
I wish it were! I like Lisitsa very much. She's a wonderful pianist and has done amazing things to promote our art to a wider public. Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.


I agree. She comes off as a much more serious artist than recent commercial types (LL, Yundi Li, and Yuja Wang to an extent) and isn't afraid to do things off the beaten path. Her Ives CD with Hilary Hahn is great. One could make the analogy that the online buzz that her videos have created is the modern equivalent of the Cliburn ticker-tape parade.

And by all accounts, she's a tremendously nice person, unlike most others in her tier.
_________________________
http://www.BrendanKinsella.com

Top
#2170029 - 10/22/13 12:14 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Orange Soda King]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
According to this link http://chopinsociety.org/ola-kern.html

Kern is going to play Op. 35, nos. 3 and 4. At least in that specific concert. Maybe she has others, too. I'm very interested to hear those, especially. I bet her tremolos in No. 4 will be amazingly light, effortless, and, well, FAST. ha

I'm going to be there.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2170031 - 10/22/13 12:16 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Pogorelich. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 4528
Loc: in the past
What's wrong with people expressing their preference? It's not about finding a "fault". I mean, there's plenty of people who hate my playing - whatever..
_________________________

'I want to invest my emotions only in music; it will never disappoint me or hurt me - it is a safe place to be.'

Top
#2170045 - 10/22/13 12:39 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19335
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Wow!!

And I thought this thread was for Lisitsa's fan club.... wink


I wish it were! I like Lisitsa very much. She's a wonderful pianist and has done amazing things to promote our art to a wider public. Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.

It's also proof of how much easier it is to cut someone down than build someone up. If some of these people really cared about the art they profess to care so much about, they'd spend more time promoting what they like instead of taking the low easy road criticizing what they don't.
Agree totally especially with your second paragraph. A few of those most critical on this thread are among the PW posters who routinely criticize almost every pianist, whether professional or amateur PW member.

I think some who find her unmusical say this just because her interpretation is different from their own. If Lisitsa or another professional pianist makes a musical choice that I don't like, I usually try and figure why maybe that choice is reasonable as opposed to dismissing it out of hand.

I also thought the NY Times review was rather shallow. The reviewer mentions Lisitsa's "glamour" as being one main ingredient in her success, but totally leaves out/overlooks her personality and ability to connect with audiences, which is I think the absolute most important thing about her playing. He also criticizes her performance of some Nocturnes as being "assertive" in places, but don't many of the Nocturnes have assertive passages?

Although I wasn't there, I cannot imagine that Lisitsa would "mock" the program notes about the Shostakovitch Sonata she played. She may have disagreed with the program notes about this piece, but it would be highly uncharacteristic of her(or almost any pianist performing in an important venue) to mock them. Naturally, she had to quote them if she was going to express any disagreement with them. Perhaps she just thought it made sense to express her thinking about the piece she was about to perform since her concept was very different from the one in the program notes. My guess is the reviewer's description of her comments was far too strong, but I'd be curious to hear from any in attendance about this.

I do not love her interpretation of everything she plays, but I
think her contribution in terms of popularizing classical music is incredible. And she seems to accomplish this without the "extra stuff" that IMO diminishes the playing of you know who.


Edited by pianoloverus (10/22/13 01:04 PM)

Top
#2170120 - 10/22/13 03:06 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: pianoloverus]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Although I wasn't there, I cannot imagine that Lisitsa would "mock" the program notes about the Shostakovitch Sonata she played. She may have disagreed with the program notes about this piece, but it would be highly uncharacteristic of her(or almost any pianist performing in an important venue) to mock them. Naturally, she had to quote them if she was going to express any disagreement with them. Perhaps she just thought it made sense to express her thinking about the piece she was about to perform since her concept was very different from the one in the program notes. My guess is the reviewer's description of her comments was far too strong, but I'd be curious to hear from any in attendance about this.

Actually, the reviewer was pretty much spot-on. She did mock the program notes - she sarcastically quoted passages from them and laughed about their incompetency and over-technicality. However, I think that speech was one of the best parts of the concert - it was quite funny.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2170149 - 10/22/13 03:57 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Pogorelich. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 4528
Loc: in the past
Wait so what's the deal here, are we supposed to love every performer out there?
_________________________

'I want to invest my emotions only in music; it will never disappoint me or hurt me - it is a safe place to be.'

Top
#2170161 - 10/22/13 04:25 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Pogorelich.]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Wait so what's the deal here, are we supposed to love every performer out there?

Yes. Including BachMach2.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2170180 - 10/22/13 05:24 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 777
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Wow!!

And I thought this thread was for Lisitsa's fan club.... wink

I wish it were! I like Lisitsa very much. She's a wonderful pianist and has done amazing things to promote our art to a wider public. Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.

I have no problem with people "finding fault", if we mean disagreeing with interpretations. But what continues to puzzle me is the vitriol that seems to pour forth in this forum whenever people like Lisitsa or Lang Lang are mentioned (much more so in LL's case).

I think the problem is that people refuse to separate these artists' interpretive choices from their enormous contributions to classical music as a whole. Classical music is the only type of music where the personality of the performer is subservient to the music. In all other musical genres, the performer reigns supreme, so things like showmanship, marketing, self-promotion, etc. are a must. Likewise, a classical artist who sincerely wishes to introduce more people to classical music must also create and continually burnish a public persona. You can't lead people who are unfamiliar with classical music directly to Beethoven. But if you first bring them to Lisitsa or Lang Lang, you may just entice a few of them to give LVB a listen.

Yet the classical music establishment seems to want no part of this. They decry such crass commercialization and self-promotion as unseemly. And that's all well and good if our goal is to maintain the status quo and a sense of decorum by keeping the hoi polloi, the riffraff, the unscrubbed masses on the other side of the club gates. And, if the result is to consign Bach and Mozart to the ash heap of history in another generation or two, so what? At least we got ours.

So when I hear people pile on Lang Lang or Lisitsa, I'm always skeptical of the motivation. Is it really just the playing that bothers these critics? Or is it the fact that fame and fortune have smiled on these two young pianists, and they are seen as somehow undeserving of it? I suspect the latter, because the critics always seem to exude a personal animus towards them that far exceeds the usual bounds of musical criticism.

IMHO, both Lisitsa and Lang Lang are major talents, with prodigious techniques, who have a genuine love of music, and a genuine desire to share their music with as many as possible. No, they are not Argerich or Sokolov or Perahia. But they are ambassadors to a type of music that only a small minority knows much, if anything about. So I believe they are worthy of admiration, if for no other reason than they might be incubating a new generation of music lovers, who will become the future audiences of the next Argerich or Sokolov or Perahia.

Top
#2170212 - 10/22/13 06:20 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Pogorelich. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 4528
Loc: in the past
Of course it's great that they are classical musicians! Trust me, with the battles I'm among right now, it's SO good to remind myself that classical music hasn't died yet, and it is great that people are still interested in this genre.

But that isn't what the critics are concerned with in this case. Nor does it have to do with people's "fame and fortune" - people are talking about pure musicianship here, nothing else.

I mean, Jesus, I'd rather listen to any well-known classical musicians right now than the crap pop culture is vomiting on us. But that's not the point here..
_________________________

'I want to invest my emotions only in music; it will never disappoint me or hurt me - it is a safe place to be.'

Top
#2170222 - 10/22/13 06:50 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Pogorelich.]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13789
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Wait so what's the deal here, are we supposed to love every performer out there?


Love, no.

Support, yes.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

Top
#2170224 - 10/22/13 06:52 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
Pogorelich. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 4528
Loc: in the past
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Wait so what's the deal here, are we supposed to love every performer out there?


Love, no.

Support, yes.


Why would someone support something they don't like? (not talking about myself here)
_________________________

'I want to invest my emotions only in music; it will never disappoint me or hurt me - it is a safe place to be.'

Top
#2170225 - 10/22/13 06:53 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Pogorelich. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/08
Posts: 4528
Loc: in the past
And before you launch into the "classical music needs support" lecture, there are tons of artists that need/deserve our support, and there's nothing wrong with preferring one to another..
_________________________

'I want to invest my emotions only in music; it will never disappoint me or hurt me - it is a safe place to be.'

Top
#2170229 - 10/22/13 07:11 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Old Man]
toyboy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 334
Loc: Vermont
Originally Posted By: Old Man
You can't lead people who are unfamiliar with classical music directly to Beethoven. But if you first bring them to Lisitsa or Lang Lang, you may just entice a few of them to give LVB a listen.


not sure i can accept this logic for two reasons. it piles an awful lot of responsibility on two, or a few, charismatic musicians to "bring people into the fold". 2) it's a rather patronizing remark in that it assumes any given person needs an enticement as you suggest. In a media rich world that we're in, it only increases chance of immersion into "LVB" (assuming LVB is the pinnacle goal is suspect in my opinion but that's a whole other debate), however slight it might be. People heard Pachelbel's Canon back in the 70s from (I forget, a film?); Kubrick used classical music in many of his films; Yo Yo Ma has been ubiquitous. Whether any of these examples have caused "the riff raff" to attend more classical music is doubtful. But if a Person A heard Schubert's Impromptu in Barry Lyndon, bought the soundtrack album and took a liking to the Handel as well, I'd call that a day's work. But to worry about mass conversion into classical music, that's a bit rich.

Originally Posted By: Old Man
Yet the classical music establishment seems to want no part of this. They decry such crass commercialization and self-promotion as unseemly. And that's all well and good if our goal is to maintain the status quo and a sense of decorum by keeping the hoi polloi, the riffraff, the unscrubbed masses on the other side of the club gates. And, if the result is to consign Bach and Mozart to the ash heap of history in another generation or two, so what? At least we got ours.


mein gott, the cynicism that you throw out to the so-called hoi polloi is quite clever...and rude. At least we got ours? You're setting up quite a clever straw dog in this argument. Again, the future of classical music can hardly be dependent on two self-promoting artists. I say thank goodness because there are all sorts of other "invitations" out there: Matt Haimovitz playing in bars; the Poisson Rouge bringing the music down a notch; free lunch-time concerts seemingly everywhere; a guy I saw playing his cello out on the sidewalk for the patrons of the outdoor Italian restaurant to hear. At least we got ours? Are you sure about that?

Originally Posted By: Old Man
So when I hear people pile on Lang Lang or Lisitsa, I'm always skeptical of the motivation. Is it really just the playing that bothers these critics? Or is it the fact that fame and fortune have smiled on these two young pianists, and they are seen as somehow undeserving of it? I suspect the latter, because the critics always seem to exude a personal animus towards them that far exceeds the usual bounds of musical criticism.


That's just unfair to the professionality of the critic. My take-away from Tommasini's criticism is that this girl's got talent but fears she is distracting herself with alot of her audience gimmicks. I really fail to see any jealousy on his part.

But if you want to really understand Lisitsa's or Lang's methods of attracting audiences, compare their strategy to someone like Bernstein, who built an audience from the ground up with his young people's concerts; his sincerity and warm personality; and his otherwise conservative demeanor. I am fascinated by what Lisitsa is doing on YouTube, at least outside of it's use as self-promotion. Maybe, probably, Bernstein too would embrace YouTube as a mean to reach out but my guess is he'd be using it more as an educational tool, not simply as a popularity contest.


Edited by toyboy (10/22/13 11:43 PM)
_________________________
"Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense."
Gertrude Stein

Top
#2170257 - 10/22/13 08:03 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Pogorelich.]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 777
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Of course it's great that they are classical musicians! Trust me, with the battles I'm among right now, it's SO good to remind myself that classical music hasn't died yet, and it is great that people are still interested in this genre.

But that isn't what the critics are concerned with in this case. Nor does it have to do with people's "fame and fortune" - people are talking about pure musicianship here, nothing else.

I mean, Jesus, I'd rather listen to any well-known classical musicians right now than the crap pop culture is vomiting on us. But that's not the point here..

I agree that musicianship should be the focus of a music critic, and as I said, I believe that any artist's interpretation is always open to legitimate criticism.

When I said "critics", I was really talking about the critics right here at PW. Open up a Lang Lang thread and see what you get. Endless sniping and snarky comments about his leather pants and his smoke machine and his marketing, etc. It's perfectly fine to criticize his "La Campanella", but to go on and on about his clothes, his emoting at the piano, etc. is, I believe, born of a sense of injustice: Why does LL get all the packed houses and the fame and adulation, when so-and-so is a far superior musician?

But I think Lang Lang and Lisitsa are playing to two different audiences. Both accept many invitations to play with local orchestras for their season subscribers, and they play it straight up. I saw LL play Mendelssohn No. 1 in such a venue, and he was as traditional as any other pianist. He was dressed in customary concert attire, and while he couldn't resist his usual swaying and swooning on the bench, he delivered an impeccable performance. The audience, comprised, for the most part, of traditional concert goers, gave him multiple standing ovations.

But LL also plays at large, "non classical" venues, and here he is playing to the "hoi polloi". His intent is not to win over the local music critic (or the critics at PW), but to be a rock star: Black leather, smoke, and yes, maybe taking a lot of liberties with the music itself. But for people who are not familiar with classical music, this is what's required. He's simply using technology and pop culture to woo folks to a place they've never visited. The end result of his efforts may be that half a dozen people are "won over", so there are no great expectations here. But I do believe it's a worthy cause.

Top
#2170261 - 10/22/13 08:06 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
The source of the introduction to 'classical' music is rather unimportant. The fact that it is a source is very important. Youtube, NPR, or even the past TV show "Wings."

In the 1990's, I had many friends ask me what that "cool" music was. Many of those friends now have season tickets to the opera, the symphony, or own a ton of CD's.

The 'exposure' is the most important entry for all to enjoy great music. People who attend concerts/recitals by LL or VL already know about them. Hearing opening of the Beethoven 5th, on radio or in a commercial, has probably drawn more people into the concert hall than anything else.

For a current "inspiration" as introduction to classical music, check out the musical soundtrack to "Mom" on CBS. Not the greatest show, but ya can't fault the music!

Let us not discount "I killed a wabbit," "Fantasia," or Buggs Bunny as the Maestro.

Inspiration and attraction lies only around the corner. Kindling that little spark is the responsibility of all those who cherish the worth of classical music.

_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170280 - 10/22/13 08:44 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Old Man]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: Old Man

But I think Lang Lang and Lisitsa are playing to two different audiences. Both accept many invitations to play with local orchestras for their season subscribers, and they play it straight up. I saw LL play Mendelssohn No. 1 in such a venue, and he was as traditional as any other pianist. He was dressed in customary concert attire, and while he couldn't resist his usual swaying and swooning on the bench, he delivered an impeccable performance. The audience, comprised, for the most part, of traditional concert goers, gave him multiple standing ovations.

But LL also plays at large, "non classical" venues, and here he is playing to the "hoi polloi". His intent is not to win over the local music critic (or the critics at PW), but to be a rock star: Black leather, smoke, and yes, maybe taking a lot of liberties with the music itself. But for people who are not familiar with classical music, this is what's required. He's simply using technology and pop culture to woo folks to a place they've never visited. The end result of his efforts may be that half a dozen people are "won over", so there are no great expectations here. But I do believe it's a worthy cause.

I'd never attend a Lang Lang concert in a rock venue, like the Roundhouse in London - which 'embodies the pianist's mission to reach new audiences with classical music' (according to the DVD blurb). Yet even there, he plays the music 'straight', despite being engulfed by CO2 smoke - he never 'Liberaces' by adding roulades of his own invention, or by chopping the 'boring bits' off. The rock fans got the whole thing, and they loved it. Compare that to Pavarotti, Caballe et al, who not only perform with pop singers (who can't sing in tune) but also do so in pop arrangements.

And last time I saw him, he introduced new audiences to chamber music, by sandwiching a concert of piano trios (Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov and Mendelssohn) with Repin and Maisky in between a solo concert and a 'outreach' one where the performers were all children (which I mentioned in another thread).

Lisitsa takes a different route to popularise classical music, but she too never goes for the easy method by playing 'classical pops' or 'cross-over' rubbish. What they have in common is the courage of their convictions, that they only play what they love (but know how to tailor their programs for their audiences), but still get the non-traditional audiences to come and hear unadulterated classical music that has not been 'tarted-up' to appeal to pop/rock fans.

I'd bet that many of the audience for Lisitsa's Rach 3 that was broadcast live on BBC had never heard it before, but came just because of Lisitsa and her Youtube fame. Even if only a small number of them become converted to the cause of classical music and go on to explore more, that is a triumph that we classical music lovers, seeing the dwindling and ageing audiences in the concert halls, cannot afford to turn up our snobbish noses at.....
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2170300 - 10/22/13 09:33 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: Kreisler


Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.



I'm quite sure no one WANTS to find fault. I've made it quite clear that I like the approach she takes with the public and the fact that she has the courage to try something different. Her technique is brilliant, but I simply don't care for her playing, nor am I required to. I've not ever LOOKED for fault with her. I've not ever WANTED to find fault with her. I am not a fan and doubt I ever will be.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


Top
#2170301 - 10/22/13 09:37 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6646
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Wait so what's the deal here, are we supposed to love every performer out there?


Love, no.

Support, yes.


Bah!!!!!!!! No, no, no and no!!! Step away from the crack pipe please.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


Top
#2170307 - 10/22/13 09:47 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
wower Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/13/10
Posts: 242
Loc: Calgary
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: Pogorelich.
Wait so what's the deal here, are we supposed to love every performer out there?


Love, no.

Support, yes.


instapoll: I got to go with K on this one. Local is awesome.
_________________________
Bad spellers of the world untie!

Top
#2170364 - 10/23/13 12:05 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Old Man]
toyboy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 334
Loc: Vermont
Originally Posted By: Old Man

When I said "critics", I was really talking about the critics right here at PW. Open up a Lang Lang thread and see what you get. Endless sniping and snarky comments about his leather pants and his smoke machine and his marketing, etc. It's perfectly fine to criticize his "La Campanella", but to go on and on about his clothes, his emoting at the piano, etc. is, I believe, born of a sense of injustice: Why does LL get all the packed houses and the fame and adulation, when so-and-so is a far superior musician?


Despite all your well-reasoned sociological points (and they are), it's all really just rhetorical, even your last question. Why? Because I can't worry about "how many" people I might convert when I play because that isn't the point of playing music. And I can't worry about whether I am superior or inferior to another musician, because that isn't the point of learning music. But I do like to think that my playing in public (so far in a retirement home, hospital lobby and a public atrium) can have as much affect as Lang Lang's playing. Maybe sometimes moreso because it is that much closer and personable. And you should see the savings I can enjoy by dressing only in jeans and avoiding those astronomical rental costs for smoke machines!


Edited by toyboy (10/23/13 12:07 AM)
_________________________
"Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense."
Gertrude Stein

Top
#2170483 - 10/23/13 07:25 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Wow!!

And I thought this thread was for Lisitsa's fan club.... wink


I wish it were! I like Lisitsa very much. She's a wonderful pianist and has done amazing things to promote our art to a wider public. Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.



Dear Beyond Me: People having been "finding fault" with performers in the arts for more than 2000 years, going back to Greek drama. As far as Western classical music criticism goes, Telemann ran a musical publication that had some of that, almost 300 years ago, and it has only increased since then. So maybe it's just part of the whole culture, to "find fault".

The reason why people criticize the arts should be fairly simple to understand. For one thing, people like to share their critical opinion (especially those who have spent some time and effort in becoming "informed" in various ways), and, apparently, other people like to read/hear what they have to say. Some people even may learn something from it. And since the days of Telemann, many hundreds of people have earned some money or other consideration by doing just that.

More informally, people involved in the arts either as active participants or as patrons generally do share and discuss opinions, both positive and negative, at least in my experience. People do like to talk about the things that interest them, you know, and it is not always flattering to the subject matter.

Quote:


It's also proof of how much easier it is to cut someone down than build someone up. If some of these people really cared about the art they profess to care so much about, they'd spend more time promoting what they like instead of taking the low easy road criticizing what they don't.


I've never noticed that Tommasini was particularly inclined towards negative reviews.

About it being easier to cut someone down rather than build them up, you've just given a nice example of exactly that. After all, you could have given kudos to Tommasini for his critical acumen, but instead have chosen the low easy road of faulting him for his review of a concert that you didn't even attend.

Top
#2170492 - 10/23/13 07:42 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Brendan]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Brendan
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
I wish it were! I like Lisitsa very much. She's a wonderful pianist and has done amazing things to promote our art to a wider public. Why anyone would want to find fault is beyond me.


I agree. She comes off as a much more serious artist than recent commercial types (LL, Yundi Li, and Yuja Wang to an extent) and isn't afraid to do things off the beaten path. Her Ives CD with Hilary Hahn is great. One could make the analogy that the online buzz that her videos have created is the modern equivalent of the Cliburn ticker-tape parade.



Funny about her hooking up with Hahn - Hahn is, to me, kind of creepy in her absolute technical perfection and utter lack of blood and heart. Lisitsa is a good match.

Quote:


And by all accounts, she's a tremendously nice person, unlike most others in her tier.


Awwwww..... Well, since she is the ONLY person in her tier, it's not that hard to pull off. (BTW, it doesn't sound to me that making sarcastic and completely unnecessary fun of the writer of her program notes is particularly "nice".)

I used to know a few extremely nice pianists back in college - it didn't seem to have any particular effect on their playing, though. It didn't improve it, that much is for certain.

Top
#2170497 - 10/23/13 07:52 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist

Actually, the reviewer was pretty much spot-on. She did mock the program notes - she sarcastically quoted passages from them and laughed about their incompetency and over-technicality. However, I think that speech was one of the best parts of the concert - it was quite funny.


Her real talent may be in schmoozing. Given how many times it comes up that people are positively impressed by encounters with her that are not in a formal concert (where she plays and they listen and that's all that happens), there's a case to be made, I think.

Top
#2170504 - 10/23/13 08:12 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: bennevis
And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


Tommasini is his last name and his first name is Anthony.

I realize that you are having some difficulties with acculturation and gender identity, but would suggest that you tread lightly in this area. Better yet, avoid it entirely.

Top
#2170515 - 10/23/13 08:41 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13789
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I wasn't talking about Tommasini in my post, I was talking about the critical commentary in this thread. wr is right of course, criticisms have been levied against artists since the dawn of time. However, the level and character of criticism has changed a great deal. People used to write articles that were insightful; when Hanslick or Schumann or Debussy had strong criticisms of someone, they crafted thoughtful arguments that explained their position. Then they signed their names to it and championed the music they did love.

Here, people write things like "I think her musicianship is very much in question."

I don't expect everyone to be a Tommasini, Lebrecht, Ross, Page, or Schonberg, but it would be nice to see someone at least try.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

Top
#2170524 - 10/23/13 09:08 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19335
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
I wasn't talking about Tommasini in my post, I was talking about the critical commentary in this thread. wr is right of course, criticisms have been levied against artists since the dawn of time. However, the level and character of criticism has changed a great deal. People used to write articles that were insightful; when Hanslick or Schumann or Debussy had strong criticisms of someone, they crafted thoughtful arguments that explained their position. Then they signed their names to it and championed the music they did love.

Here, people write things like "I think her musicianship is very much in question."

I don't expect everyone to be a Tommasini, Lebrecht, Ross, Page, or Schonberg, but it would be nice to see someone at least try.
Exactly. I think many of those who strongly objected to Kreisler's post completely missed his point.

Kreisler was, I believe, objecting to the tone and content of the post. Several of those who didn't like Lisitsa's playing or Kreisler's comment about their review are among those who with incredible regularity write the most arrogant, nasty, and mean spirited posts in response to most everyone's playing whether professional or amateur.

Painting someone with the broad description of "Her musicianship is very much in question" is what I would call a pretty scathing review. The reviewer is assuming their musical understanding is far superior. Some specific examples of what the reviewer thought was unmusical, with phrasing clearly indicating it's the reviewers opinion as opposed to being factual, together with what they liked about the concert is the way to write a more balanced review that doesn't come off as a nasty diatribe.

It's possible to be quite critical without sounding nasty or arrogant. It's really the Golden Rule applied to concert reviewing or showing someone some basic respect.


Edited by pianoloverus (10/23/13 06:39 PM)

Top
#2170527 - 10/23/13 09:19 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: pianoloverus]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13789
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Painting someone with the broad description of "Her musicianship is very much in question" is what I would call a pretty scathing review. The reviewer is assuming their musical understanding is far superior.


Yes.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

Top
#2170529 - 10/23/13 09:24 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19335
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: wr
Well, since she is the ONLY person in her tier, it's not that hard to pull off. (BTW, it doesn't sound to me that making sarcastic and completely unnecessary fun of the writer of her program notes is particularly "nice".)

I used to know a few extremely nice pianists back in college - it didn't seem to have any particular effect on their playing, though. It didn't improve it, that much is for certain.
Lisitsa is not the only person in her tier. "Tier" refers to her level of success as a professional.

Even if she made sarcastic comments about the program notes writer(I find this hard to believe and do not give much weight to polyphonist's saying this was true), that would be one incident. It's undeniable that part of Lisitsa's appeal is that she does come off as an incredibly nice and warm person. One incident, even if true, doesn't change that.

I can't figure out why you would mention that being nice doesn't improve one's playing based on your experience with college friends. Are you saying that Lisitsa's nice but one shouldn't make that part of the evaluation of her performance? I think a performer's stage presence is certainly part of what goes into evaluating a performance if not the most important part.

Top
#2170531 - 10/23/13 09:41 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Kreisler]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
I wasn't talking about Tommasini in my post, I was talking about the critical commentary in this thread. wr is right of course, criticisms have been levied against artists since the dawn of time. However, the level and character of criticism has changed a great deal. People used to write articles that were insightful; when Hanslick or Schumann or Debussy had strong criticisms of someone, they crafted thoughtful arguments that explained their position. Then they signed their names to it and championed the music they did love.

Here, people write things like "I think her musicianship is very much in question."

I don't expect everyone to be a Tommasini, Lebrecht, Ross, Page, or Schonberg, but it would be nice to see someone at least try.


I don't see any particular reason to go into a lot of detail, when prompted by something as general and unsupported as "what isn't in question is her technical facility and musicianship".

It's sufficient to say that someone might disagree with such a sweeping statement, IMO. OTOH, if I were being paid by the word...


Edited by wr (10/23/13 09:49 AM)

Top
#2170537 - 10/23/13 10:05 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Nikolas Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5261
Loc: Europe
I so wish to be as successful and get my own thread of fighting in PW! grin Wouldn't that be awesome?
_________________________
http://www.musica-ferrum.com

Top
#2170544 - 10/23/13 10:16 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: bennevis
And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


Tommasini is his last name and his first name is Anthony.

I realize that you are having some difficulties with acculturation and gender identity, but would suggest that you tread lightly in this area. Better yet, avoid it entirely.


Are you having some problem with humor failure recently?

And what have you got against Lisitsa? You defend some faceless critic to the hilt (who's of course immune to any criticism, as that's not going to impact on his earnings) and criticize a pianist - not just her playing, but her musicianship - who has done more to further the cause of classical piano in recent years than almost anyone else. Certainly more than any so-called critic, including yourself.

Read your own posts, before posting any riposte. Better still, don't.
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2170550 - 10/23/13 10:33 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: toyboy]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 777
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: toyboy
Originally Posted By: Old Man
You can't lead people who are unfamiliar with classical music directly to Beethoven. But if you first bring them to Lisitsa or Lang Lang, you may just entice a few of them to give LVB a listen.

not sure i can accept this logic for two reasons. it piles an awful lot of responsibility on two, or a few, charismatic musicians to "bring people into the fold". 2) it's a rather patronizing remark in that it assumes any given person needs an enticement as you suggest. In a media rich world that we're in, it only increases chance of immersion into "LVB" (assuming LVB is the pinnacle goal is suspect in my opinion but that's a whole other debate), however slight it might be. People heard Pachelbel's Canon back in the 70s from (I forget, a film?); Kubrick used classical music in many of his films; Yo Yo Ma has been ubiquitous. Whether any of these examples have caused "the riff raff" to attend more classical music is doubtful. But if a Person A heard Schubert's Impromptu in Barry Lyndon, bought the soundtrack album and took a liking to the Handel as well, I'd call that a day's work. But to worry about mass conversion into classical music, that's a bit rich.

No responsibility is being placed on any artist. Each artist chooses his own path, and any responsibility he may feel is entirely self-imposed. No one expects any pianist to "do" anything except produce beautiful music.

I'm not sure what is patronizing about my comment. As I said in a previous post, people who like other forms of music are attracted to the performer, not the music itself, so yes, I do believe they need some enticement. But that is a cultural phenomenon. I was making no judgement about it, one way or the other. Audiences (and I'm including myself) enjoy a feeling of connection with the performer, and that was my point. Lang Lang and Lisitsa have figured out ways to make that connection.

And no, I don't "worry" about "mass conversions" to classical music. Haven't lost a wink of sleep over it. But I would certainly welcome whatever conversions are possible.

Originally Posted By: toyboy
Originally Posted By: Old Man
Yet the classical music establishment seems to want no part of this. They decry such crass commercialization and self-promotion as unseemly. And that's all well and good if our goal is to maintain the status quo and a sense of decorum by keeping the hoi polloi, the riffraff, the unscrubbed masses on the other side of the club gates. And, if the result is to consign Bach and Mozart to the ash heap of history in another generation or two, so what? At least we got ours.

mein gott, the cynicism that you throw out to the so-called hoi polloi is quite clever...and rude. At least we got ours? You're setting up quite a clever straw dog in this argument. Again, the future of classical music can hardly be dependent on two self-promoting artists. I say thank goodness because there are all sorts of other "invitations" out there: Matt Haimovitz playing in bars; the Poisson Rouge bringing the music down a notch; free lunch-time concerts seemingly everywhere; a guy I saw playing his cello out on the sidewalk for the patrons of the outdoor Italian restaurant to here. At least we got ours? Are you sure about that?

Gott im Himmel, toyboy, I'm not sure about anything! laugh And if I was being rude, I certainly didn't mean to be. And once again, you're acting as though I'm placing the weight of the world on these two "self-promoting artists". I'm simply saying that I think they're making a significant contribution to the world of music, but as you correctly point out, they're two of many. I find any attempts to expand the universe of classical music fans a welcome and refreshing change. But I've sensed that there are others here at PW who couldn't care less about expanding the audience. They like things the way they are, and view artists like LL and Lisitsa as interlopers.

Originally Posted By: toyboy
Originally Posted By: Old Man
So when I hear people pile on Lang Lang or Lisitsa, I'm always skeptical of the motivation. Is it really just the playing that bothers these critics? Or is it the fact that fame and fortune have smiled on these two young pianists, and they are seen as somehow undeserving of it? I suspect the latter, because the critics always seem to exude a personal animus towards them that far exceeds the usual bounds of musical criticism.

That's just unfair to the professionality of the critic. My take-away from Tommasini's criticism is that this girl's got talent but fears she is distracting herself with alot of her audience gimmicks. I really fail to see any jealousy on his part.

But if you want to really understand Lisitsa's or Lang's methods of attracting audiences, compare their strategy to someone like Bernstein, who built an audience from the ground up with his young people's concerts; his sincerity and warm personality; and his otherwise conservative demeanor. I am fascinated by what Lisitsa is doing on YouTube, at least outside of it's use as self-promotion. Maybe, probably, Bernstein too would embrace YouTube as a mean to reach out but my guess is he'd be using it more as an educational tool, not simply as a popularity contest.

As I said, I was not questioning the professional music critics. In general, I think they've been fair to LL and Lisitsa, and, for the most part, have focused on the performance rather than the performer. But in this forum, some of the criticism seems very personal, as though LL and Lisitsa have crashed their private party.

And you won't get any argument from me about Bernstein. I spent many hours of my childhood watching his young people's concerts. But LB's mission was entirely different. His career as a conductor, composer, and pianist was already firmly established, so he had no need for self-promotion. His goal was pure education. And since there were only 3 networks in the US at that time, he was provided a platform in prime time that today's artists can't even fathom.

LL and Lisitsa, OTOH, are straddling the fence. They are promoting themselves first and foremost, but they are doing it in a way that is welcoming to those with no exposure to classical music. I see no incompatibility between advancing one's own career and trying to promote classical music to the non-classical-music-loving public at the same time. Self interest and altruism are not mutually exclusive.

Top
#2170551 - 10/23/13 10:33 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Nikolas]
Cinnamonbear Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3897
Loc: Rockford, IL
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I so wish to be as successful and get my own thread of fighting in PW! grin Wouldn't that be awesome?


It's easy, Nikolas! grin Here's how to do it:

1) Wait a week from today. Then,

2) Start a thread on any of these topics (your choice):

--Lang Lang
--Valentina
--The Use of Arpeggiation and Asynchronization
--Whether or not to listen to recordings of a piece you are currently learning
--Whether or not composers really meant musicians to follow what they wrote in a score

I am sure there are other topics that would work, but these are "sure fire," as they say. If you can (and I am sure you can) include some typos or grammatical errors in your original post. That will certainly help things along. thumb Oh--and whatever topic you choose, if you can manage to work an angle that relates religion or politics to music, people who contribute to your thread can skate right up to thin ice and get the moderators involved. It's always good to get the moderators involved. wink

--Andy


Edited by Cinnamonbear (10/23/13 11:01 AM)
Edit Reason: added a thought
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

Top
#2170563 - 10/23/13 10:51 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Alkanaut Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/28/13
Posts: 28
Loc: NJ
I planned to see her at 92Y, but was not able to because of other commitments. While she is not my favorite pianist, I would not think twice about seeing her play even though I as a listener might not agree with some of her interpretations. Her technique is pretty solid and her inspiration and excitement about performing live adds up a lot to the experience.

BTW, in case someone is not aware, Lisitsa means "fox" in Russian, does anyone think that the name is very fitting to her looks and personality?

Top
#2170565 - 10/23/13 10:59 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Cinnamonbear]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19335
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Cinnamonbear
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I so wish to be as successful and get my own thread of fighting in PW! grin Wouldn't that be awesome?


It's easy, Nikolas! grin Here's how to do it:

1) Wait a week from today. Then,

2) Start a thread on any of these topics (your choice):

--Lang Lang
--Valentina
--The Use of Arpeggiation and Asynchronization
--Whether or not to listen to recordings of a piece you are currently learning
--Whether or not composers really meant musicians to follow what they wrote in a score

I am sure there are other topics that would work, but these are "sure fire," as they say. If you can (and I am sure you can) include some typos or grammatical errors in your original post. That will certainly help things along. thumb

--Andy
We should have a separate PW forum for each of those topics.

Top
#2170569 - 10/23/13 11:09 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: pianoloverus]
Cinnamonbear Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3897
Loc: Rockford, IL
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: Cinnamonbear
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I so wish to be as successful and get my own thread of fighting in PW! grin Wouldn't that be awesome?


It's easy, Nikolas! grin Here's how to do it:[...]
--Lang Lang
--Valentina
--The Use of Arpeggiation and Asynchronization
--Whether or not to listen to recordings of a piece you are currently learning
--Whether or not composers really meant musicians to follow what they wrote in a score
[...]
We should have a separate PW forum for each of those topics.


LOL! Another "sure fire" topic--hop on over to the Tuner/Tech forum and ask, "Equal Temperament or Unequal Temperament?" (I can even tell you who will reply to that question, and what they will say... ) smile
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

Top
#2170574 - 10/23/13 11:26 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Cinnamonbear]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 777
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: Cinnamonbear
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I so wish to be as successful and get my own thread of fighting in PW! grin Wouldn't that be awesome?

It's easy, Nikolas! grin Here's how to do it:

1) Wait a week from today. Then,

2) Start a thread on any of these topics (your choice):

--Lang Lang
--Valentina
--The Use of Arpeggiation and Asynchronization
--Whether or not to listen to recordings of a piece you are currently learning
--Whether or not composers really meant musicians to follow what they wrote in a score

--Andy

I think you forgot one, Andy:

--If you believe a piece is not horribly difficult to play, you simply don't understand it.

Top
#2170575 - 10/23/13 11:26 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
I enjoy Val's playing.

I do not enjoy Lang's hidden insights.

End of Review.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170582 - 10/23/13 11:31 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Old Man]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Old Man
Originally Posted By: Cinnamonbear
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I so wish to be as successful and get my own thread of fighting in PW! grin Wouldn't that be awesome?

It's easy, Nikolas! grin Here's how to do it:

1) Wait a week from today. Then,

2) Start a thread on any of these topics (your choice):

--Lang Lang
--Valentina
--The Use of Arpeggiation and Asynchronization
--Whether or not to listen to recordings of a piece you are currently learning
--Whether or not composers really meant musicians to follow what they wrote in a score

--Andy

I think you forgot one, Andy:

--If you believe a piece is not horribly difficult to play, you simply don't understand it.

Often it's true.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2170584 - 10/23/13 11:35 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
Often ??????
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170585 - 10/23/13 11:38 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Minnesota Marty]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Often ??????

Very often.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2170586 - 10/23/13 11:41 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 777
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Often ??????

Very often.

But not always.

Top
#2170597 - 10/23/13 12:11 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
But usually, as Andy points out.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170599 - 10/23/13 12:13 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
TimV Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/21/11
Posts: 69
Loc: New York, NY
Okay, I'm going to chime in on this now. I'm the one who sat next to VL on the subway and chickened out of saying hello to her.

I admire her. I support her. I was at her recital at the 92Y. I actually went to an "unofficial" recital she gave in NYC back in 2010 at the Ukrainian Cultural Center. I don't think she's the best pianist out there, and there are things I don't like about her playing. But I like what she does overall, and I'd go see her again. I can be very specific about some of the things I don't like, to give some examples.

But first I'll start with a positive comment. Her opening piece, Rachmaninoff Op 32 No. 5, was breathtaking. Such a beautiful tone and flow. I was annoyed at the people around me because the seats in that hall are very creaky, and every time someone shifted their weight, it distracted me. OH MY GOD WILL YOU JUST SIT STILL.

Op. 32 #12: The sound was too "hard." I don't necessarily think the 16th note figuration needs to sound like Ondine, but it shouldn't sound like a toccata either.

Op 32 #10: Opening was great. Middle section was voiced "backwards" IMO. 8th note triplets of the "orchestra" drowned out the brass melody.

Op 23 5$6: I don't know where my brain was. I wasn't paying attention, apparently.

Op 23 #2: Really muddy and imbalanced. The fanfare in the treble was mostly inaudible over the left hand growl. Not a lot of "space" in the 2nd more lyric section.

Overall I would say this about the performance. There were some places where she changed her interpretation from some of her youtube performances. Mostly for the better, I think. But her amazing, dazzling chops sometimes get away from her and her playing stops saying anything. The only thing some of her performances said was "wow, I can play really accurately and fast." N.B., my own playing never falls prey to this danger...

Given the option I would go see Murray Perahia play before Valentina. But if I didn't have to make that choice, I'd go see her again. I enjoyed it.

Also, a note about the program notes. I don't think she was attacking the program notes directly. She was commenting on the general practice of program notes being just so much trivia. "so and so composed opus x in blahblahblah and was published by mumbleandmumble, it was first premiered by the composer in the year blahblahblah+2 and he immediately revised it and re-premired it later that same year two towns away... <snore>" Yes, she read the notes that were written for her program. If it was a criticism of anything, it was about the general tone of program notes. She then started reading something she'd written discussing what the Shostakovitch Sonata meant to her. And also what it apparently represented to the composer, why he wrote it, what it was about for him, etc. The thing with program notes is they're usually "correct." But in the end they don't tend to be very interesting when all they do is tell you when and where the music was written. Shostakovitch's 2nd sonata tells a tale of profound horror, being written during/after the siege of Leningrad. She wanted to make sure we all knew that story.
_________________________
--------------------------
Bach WTC 1 #7
Brahms Op 76 #1, Op 118 #5
Debussy Suite Bergamasque

Top
#2170604 - 10/23/13 12:19 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Minnesota Marty]
toyboy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 334
Loc: Vermont
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
....snip....
Let us not discount "I killed a wabbit," "Fantasia," or Buggs Bunny as the Maestro.

Inspiration and attraction lies only around the corner. Kindling that little spark is the responsibility of all those who cherish the worth of classical music.


i like your thoughts marty. but it gave me one bad one. do you understand what it could mean if lang lang and bugs bunny are successful in inspiring interest in classical piano music? suddenly 1000's upon 1000's of others will join piano world wanting to share their own opinions, and the threads will reach into untold numbers of pages, and hitherto unexplored controversies. i think it is in the moderator's best interest to keep the popularity of this music to a bare minimum.

just sayin'. wink
_________________________
"Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense."
Gertrude Stein

Top
#2170619 - 10/23/13 12:43 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
toyboy,

Good idea. Let's keep it secret.

We need a hush-hush code word to get in. That, and a secret handshake.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170705 - 10/23/13 03:44 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Nikolas]
Tararex Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/27/11
Posts: 408
Loc: Middle Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I so wish to be as successful and get my own thread of fighting in PW! grin Wouldn't that be awesome?


Take care in what you wish for Mr. Nikolas.

But if that thread were to appear on PW it would be endless troubles as we ladies discussed whether you were musical, tall, handsome, thoughtful and intelligent or limited to merely musical, helpful, interesting, intelligent and cute!
_________________________

Top
#2170719 - 10/23/13 04:00 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
May I assume there is a hidden discussion of 'toyboy?'
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170782 - 10/23/13 06:11 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: bennevis]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: bennevis
And Tomasina (or whatever he/she's called)? grin


Tommasini is his last name and his first name is Anthony.

I realize that you are having some difficulties with acculturation and gender identity, but would suggest that you tread lightly in this area. Better yet, avoid it entirely.


Are you having some problem with humor failure recently?



When it comes to homophobic jibes, yes.

Quote:


And what have you got against Lisitsa? You defend some faceless critic to the hilt (who's of course immune to any criticism, as that's not going to impact on his earnings) and criticize a pianist - not just her playing, but her musicianship - who has done more to further the cause of classical piano in recent years than almost anyone else. Certainly more than any so-called critic, including yourself.

Read your own posts, before posting any riposte. Better still, don't.


What I have got against Lisitsa is her intemperate fans, who make ludicrous proclamations that she's beyond any criticism. Well, you may see her as coated in Teflon, but that doesn't mean anyone else does.

Incidentally, I can't think of any pianist whose musicianship is beyond question. That sort of perfection just doesn't exist in this world, although there may be a few who approach it; Lisitsa isn't one of them.

And after this post, you will be blissfully free of responses from me, because I won't be reading any more of your posts, either in this thread or elsewhere here at PW.

Top
#2170793 - 10/23/13 06:34 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Minnesota Marty]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty


Inspiration and attraction lies only around the corner. Kindling that little spark is the responsibility of all those who cherish the worth of classical music.


I'm perfectly happy to "kindle that little spark" with people who are interested, and have done that whenever the opportunity comes up, but I don't believe in proselytizing.

It's the "do unto others" thing - I don't like it when people try to sell their enthusiasms to me when I am not interested, and I try not to do that to others.

I also don't get why "responsibility" enters the picture. People are free to do whatever they want in regards to classical music, AFAIAC.

Top
#2170795 - 10/23/13 06:35 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
wr,

Is being obtuse a chronic condition for you?
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170796 - 10/23/13 06:35 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19335
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: wr
What I have got against Lisitsa is her intemperate fans, who make ludicrous proclamations that she's beyond any criticism. Well, you may see her as coated in Teflon, but that doesn't mean anyone else does.

Incidentally, I can't think of any pianist whose musicianship is beyond question. That sort of perfection just doesn't exist in this world, although there may be a few who approach it; Lisitsa isn't one of them.
I don't see how one can reasonably hold behavior of Lisitsa's fans against her.

Saying that no pianist's musicianship is beyond question is far different from what some posters in the thread said...that Lisitsa was lacking in musicianship.

Top
#2170799 - 10/23/13 06:37 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5108
Originally Posted By: wr
[quote=
And after this post, you will be blissfully free of responses from me, because I won't be reading any more of your posts, either in this thread or elsewhere here at PW.


Good riddance.

No, don't bother to reply. wink
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

Top
#2170803 - 10/23/13 06:43 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Minnesota Marty]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty


Is being obtuse a chronic condition for you?


Are ad hominem attacks your only mode of expression?

Top
#2170804 - 10/23/13 06:45 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7413
Loc: Rochester MN
Originally Posted By: wr
Incidentally, I can't think of any pianist whose musicianship is beyond question.

Incidentally, I can't even think of what this means.

I'll speak with a dead composer and maybe I shall find the true light.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2170812 - 10/23/13 07:04 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Minnesota Marty]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Originally Posted By: wr
Incidentally, I can't think of any pianist whose musicianship is beyond question.

Incidentally, I can't even think of what this means.

I'll speak with a dead composer and maybe I shall find the true light.


Just trolling along, eh?

Sorry, not interested.

Top
#2170815 - 10/23/13 07:13 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Old Man]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Old Man


When I said "critics", I was really talking about the critics right here at PW. Open up a Lang Lang thread and see what you get. Endless sniping and snarky comments about his leather pants and his smoke machine and his marketing, etc. It's perfectly fine to criticize his "La Campanella", but to go on and on about his clothes, his emoting at the piano, etc. is, I believe, born of a sense of injustice: Why does LL get all the packed houses and the fame and adulation, when so-and-so is a far superior musician?


By the way, I think it's worth pointing out that there are a variety of "critics" of LL here and not all of them talk about that extraneous stuff (actually, I think relatively few of them do), but instead talk about his actual playing. The worst playing from him I ever heard was in a radio broadcast, where I didn't see him at all.

Top
#2170818 - 10/23/13 07:25 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: Old Man


When I said "critics", I was really talking about the critics right here at PW. Open up a Lang Lang thread and see what you get. Endless sniping and snarky comments about his leather pants and his smoke machine and his marketing, etc. It's perfectly fine to criticize his "La Campanella", but to go on and on about his clothes, his emoting at the piano, etc. is, I believe, born of a sense of injustice: Why does LL get all the packed houses and the fame and adulation, when so-and-so is a far superior musician?


By the way, I think it's worth pointing out that there are a variety of "critics" of LL here and not all of them talk about that extraneous stuff (actually, I think relatively few of them do), but instead talk about his actual playing. The worst playing from him I ever heard was in a radio broadcast, where I didn't see him at all.

The smoke machines are particularly ludicrous. How can one respect a musician who does things like this?
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2170830 - 10/23/13 08:06 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist

The smoke machines are particularly ludicrous. How can one respect a musician who does things like this?


Well, that one is easy enough to answer...just don't attend the kind of events where they are used and you won't be bothered by them. Or you shouldn't be, IMO.

Top
#2170847 - 10/23/13 08:43 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: TimV]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7839
Originally Posted By: TimV

Op. 32 #12: The sound was too "hard." I don't necessarily think the 16th note figuration needs to sound like Ondine, but it shouldn't sound like a toccata either.



Her tone was an issue for a reviewer of a recent Rach 3 she did in the UK, too. He said "Her technique is sufficient to enable her to play the notes but not to produce depth of tone at anything above mezzo-forte, with the result that much of the music sounded brittle to the point of ugliness. I winced at several moments of attack."

So maybe her technique is not "beyond question", either.

Top
#2170894 - 10/23/13 10:22 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: wr]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 777
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist

The smoke machines are particularly ludicrous. How can one respect a musician who does things like this?


Well, that one is easy enough to answer...just don't attend the kind of events where they are used and you won't be bothered by them. Or you shouldn't be, IMO.

Exactly. As I said, LL performs in two different worlds. When he is playing with orchestras, he is not much different than any other pianist. You may not like his interpretation, but he's perfectly comfortable in, and respectful of, what I'd call the "traditional" world of classical music.

The smoke machines and black leather are reserved for the hoi polloi (to use bennevis' term). He is not trying to preach to the choir (us), and he has no expectation that you or I would even show up at such events. His goal is to attract a younger crowd who are not well versed in classical music, but who may give some consideration to a piece by Chopin or Liszt simply because they're geeked by the charismatic performer.

This is not rocket science. If you want the "serious" Lang Lang, see him when he's playing with the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia, the Cleveland, etc. I guarantee you won't be seeing any smoke machines, and you may actually enjoy the performance. For all other events, stay away.

Top
#2170930 - 10/23/13 11:45 PM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
Cinnamonbear Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3897
Loc: Rockford, IL
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
[...] The smoke machines are particularly ludicrous. How can one respect a musician who does things like this?


Does anyone know how much actual control a musician like Lang Lang or, say, Yanni (I know, I know... just stick with me for this particular question...) how much control they have regarding the production of their "show"?

Along those lines, when Valentina was here in Rockford, I asked her how much say she had over her program. Basically, she said something like, "not as much as one might think." "Management" had its say, she said, and at the time, she indicated that she was looking forward to playing something besides Liszt when the anniversary year had passed.

Sometimes I think we forget that there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes at that level of performance, and that the person at the piano faces certain pressures beyond what we see and hear them do on stage.

--Andy
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

Top
#2172175 - 10/26/13 03:42 AM Re: October 19th - Valentina Lisitsa at 92Y [Re: Polyphonist]
rxd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 1707
Loc: London, England
Put yourself in the position or a concert series promoter, particularly in a composers' centennial year. Even of a parochial music club.
If they left the programs entirely to the whim of the players, they are likely to get a very narrow variety of fare.

Now put yourself in the position of artistic director of a music festival with 3-4 concerts and lectures every day of the week(s), all attended by the same audiences. . They often have to arrange cycles of concerts on various themes to the extent that the programs are pre-arranged and then the musicians are sought out who can play it.
_________________________
Concert & Recording tuner-tech, London, England.
"in theory, practice and theory are the same thing. In practice, they're not." - Lawrence P. 'Yogi' Berra.

Eschew obfuscation.



Top
Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 >

Moderator:  Brendan, Kreisler 
What's Hot!!
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
-------------------
PIANO BOOKS
Interesting books about the piano, pianists, piano history, biographies, memoirs and more!
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
ad (Casio)
Celviano by Casio Rebate
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Knabe Pianos
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Pianoteq vs Digital Piano vs Acoustic Piano
by wildpig
Yesterday at 11:57 PM
Baldwin Hamilton 1941
by JMN12
Yesterday at 11:13 PM
Tucson, AZ: Is Arizona Room a bad place for a piano?
by Paul678
Yesterday at 08:14 PM
Kissin plays...
by JoelW
Yesterday at 07:33 PM
For Sale : True Keys Pianos (bundle) American,Italian,Ger
man

by imyself
Yesterday at 05:51 PM
Who's Online
89 registered (anotherscott, Anticlock, anamnesis, 30 invisible), 963 Guests and 23 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
76224 Members
42 Forums
157573 Topics
2314531 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
|
Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission