Showing posts from January, 2022

A Dream of Armageddon - A highly topical and relevant new opera by Dai Fujikura based on a visionary short story by H.G.Wells

  You may wonder why on this site I am posting notice of a quite extraordinary new opera in Japan.  It is to do with the close association of the annual  Chopin i Jego Europa Festival  in Warsaw, Chopin, Akiko's Piano and the concerto written for it by the gifted composer of this opera,  Dai Fujikura.  The libretto is based on a science fiction short story entitled  A Dream of Armageddon (1901) ,  conceived  before  both World Wars, by the English author H.G.Wells - a visionary writer who largely 'invented' the modern world H.G.Wells (1866-1946) Opera A Dream of Armageddon New Production - World Premiere Music by Dai FUJIKURA  Opera in 9 Scenes It seems singularly appropriate to present such a profound operatic conception at this time of a deadly pandemic, the general political moves towards populism, right-wing authoritarianism and the threats  posed  by the general breakdown of hallowed democratic institutions in so many countries  During the 2019  Chopin i jego Europa Fe

My Pleyel pianino of 1844 No: 11151 - a few thoughts

I hope you will forgive a digression. The French pianist Yves Henry at the Nohant Chopin Festival each year, devotes his time during Masterclasses to the instructive comparison of the sound palette, touch, action and pedalling of Pleyel i nstruments with modern pianos. I have a few considerations of my own to offer.  The Pleyel   pianinos are wonderful instruments, as Chopin understood and praised them. The ne plus ultra he termed them. In his lessons he demonstrated his musical interpretations to his pupils on one whilst they were seated at a concert grand Pleyel  instrument. They are the perfect domestic instrument for the pianist who wishes to explore the authentic Chopin soundscape. They are inexpensive (restored at around €12,000), small with minimal maintenance and tuning, in compass capable of dealing with everything Chopin wrote, glorious in subtle tone, intimacy and even able to thunder in the restricted space of the average modern apartment. My  Pleyel   pianino of 1844 No: 1