Showing posts from August 29, 2010

The Australian concert pianist Edward Cahill - Work in Progress

I am attempting to read myself into understanding and getting a 'feel' for the period of my next book - what one might call a  'travel biography' of the glamorous but now forgotten Australian concert pianist Edward Cahill - quite a task but rewarding. Just sharing a few of my recent discoveries with you. I share my Uncle Eddie's love of Chopin and although I never did manage to become a concert pianist although I tried very hard. I vicariously live the life of one through this project at least through writing about the performance of this composer's music (there is a significant chapter on Chopin in my most recent book A Country in the Moon: Travels in Search of the Heart of Poland ). Again I live in Warsaw which is crammed to bursting with Chopiniana at present leading up to the International Piano Competition in October.   Radio 2 here (known as Dwojka ) unashamedly plays many obscure and well- known recordings of the composer with highbrow commentary of th

Chopin and His Europe Festival 2010 - Martha Argerich, Maria Joao Pires with Frans Bruggen and the Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century - Warsaw 30 August 2010

Am very pleased to hear that all my endless discussions concerning the importance of playing period pianos (at least as an educational experiment and not necessarily a career) was  justified in a live concert last night. Both Maria Joao Pires and Martha Argerich decided to do so and are such consummate musicians they adapted very quickly to the early piano unlike many others. I feared the worst – so happy that my expectations were not realised. If the publicity is to be believed this was the first time either pianist had played a period piano in a public concert. Amazing really. Nelson Goerner, the great Argentinian pianist and an Argerich protege, has made some superb recordings of Chopin on the Chopin Institute Pleyel ( The Real Chopin Series ) so Martha Argerich must have had some familiarity with older instruments I would imagine. I am sure that both pianists learned a great deal and had some fun too. Rather oddly (but very much in the spirit of nineteenth century practice) Pi