Showing posts from 2020

Composer Abuse - Truth Decay in the Life of Fryderyk Chopin

Composer Abuse   Truth Decay in the Life of Fryderyk Chopin The Young Chopin (1810-1849) The recent, tendentious article entitled  'Chopin's interest in men airbrushed from history, programme claims' that appeared in The Guardian newspaper (Philip Oltermann and Shaun Walker, Wednesday 25 Nov 2020) clearly has an agenda that possesses only a passing relationship to serious music and more pointedly, sexual orientation in its depiction of the life of the Polish composer Fryderyk Chopin. Subtitle:  Journalist says he has found overt homoeroticism in Polish composer’s letters.  What is interesting is the fact that the Swiss public broadcaster SRF’s arts channel decided that this old 'sensationalist' chestnut was an important enough 'revelation' to have made a long programme entitled Chopin's Men concerning the issue. That his true sexual proclivities have been  'airbrushed from history' could only be seriously considered as 'Stop Press News'

Józef Elsner and the Polish National Airs 2nd Festival of Romantic Works Warsaw, 13–15 October 2020

  Pupils of Chopin Thursday 15th October 2020 19.30 Warsaw Kameralna Hubert Rutkowski - piano Broadwood historical piano (1846) on a loan from the collection of Andrzej Włodarczyk. Blüthner Modern Concert Grand This was a particularly interesting recital of charming pieces composed by unknown or forgotten but brilliant pupils of Chopin, played partly on an instrument favoured by him when visiting England. Chopin played a Broadwood , similar to this one, at his final concert at the Guildhall, London, in 1848. John Broadwood, the manufacturer,   greatly respected, appreciated and befriended Chopin, even on one occasion reserving two seats on a train for the composer, one to accommodate his feet as he felt poorly that travel day.   Adolf Gutmann (1819-1882)   In the accepted performance practice of the day Rutkowski 'preluded' (improvised) in the key before the piece. Gutmann, pianist and composer was born in Heidelberg in 1819. He moved to Paris in 1834 to take lesson

The Pleyel pianino of Chopin in a recording by Alexei Lubimov

So late at night but enthusiasm has taken over tact. A few rough notes! I have been listening to the new Alexei Lubimov CD recorded on the 1843 Pleyel pianino Serial No: 10112 by that Polish genius of sound recording of Lech Dudzic and Gabriela Blicharz. The instrument was restored and donated to the National Fryderyk Chopin Institute in 2018 by the pianist Alex Szilasi. The notes on the instrument that accompany the disc are fascinating and written by the renowned Polish authority on period pianos, Benjamin Vogel. It is absolutely wonderful..... the sound of this instrument is intimate, varied in seductive sound coloration, a delicacy that touches the sensibility in an utterly unique manner. Pianissimo is barely there like wraith drifting across the room. The polyphony of the Bach is astonishingly beautiful and the fugal voices so clear and transparent. Ravishingly eloquent. The Barcarolle is remarkable as the instrument limits the dynamic range possible, avoiding the crazy e