Monday, February 27, 2006

Alfred Brendel and the Viennese tradition

Solo Pianist at Carnegie Hall, New York, New York

I was fortunate enough to be able to see supreme master pianist, born in Austria, Alfred Brendel, at Carnegie Hall tonight playing various Viennese classical works from Haydn, Mozart and Schubert. He played with genius and with the utmost emotional sensibilities. His performance never lacked energy or passion. During the performance also, there were at times, many slight pauses but right when a piece concluded, the audience clapped right away, obviously they knew the tunes note for note. I personally wasn't familiar with the songs so I just followed the crowd, for the most part: at the conclusion of concert, I was one of the first to yell, "more, one more." Let's just say, I've been to Carnegie Hall a few times and I've learned how to ask for an encore. Yes, he did play an encore, it was beautiful and it sounded like a Handel piece. I might also add that this year Alfred Brendel turns 75.

I had been wanting to hear maestro Alfred Brendel for quite sometime, ever since I came across one of his essays and one of his poems. Yes, the man is also a highly regarded poet with volumes accredited to his name. Interestingly, he is also a photographer and painter. As a pianist, he is largely self-taught. "Many times a teacher can be too influential," he says. "Being self-taught, I learned to distrust anything I hadn't figured out myself." I hope to write more about this show tonight, I feel grateful that I was able to witness artistic excellence at its highest level.

To visit Alfred Brendel's website click the link below:
Alfred Brendel's website

Other relevant posts:
3 great albums from 2005
Brad Mehldau, Keith Jarrett and Bach
Brad Mehldau Trio, Live at the Vanguard

1 comment:

James Long said...

Sounds like a great experience. A Brendel Beethoven and Schubert recital at the Barbican in London ranks as one of the most amazing experiences of my life.