<< -- 2 -- Gordon Rumson BUT THE DARING!
Interestingly, I think that Badura-Skoda brings a bit too much modern
pianism to the performance on the fortepiano. Hard for us to believe, long
trained to use it, but syncopated pedaling was probably not the norm in
Beethoven's time. Further, he makes use of a great deal of arm weight to
produce big accents. To me the piano, more wood than steel, well nigh screams
at the assault. One technique that Badura-Skoda uses but rarely is the
rhythmic anticipation and I tend to think that this provides a very forceful
accent more in keeping with instrument and music. I'd love to have a conversation
with him about it sometime -- after I'd done a great deal of homework, for
Paul Badura-Skoda is very well informed.
But one element is crucial to Paul Badura-Skoda's musicianship: he still
loves the sound of music. This may sound trite (and may remind us too much
of the syrupy film) but when so many pianists and musicians play with a
bored perfectionism this simple affection for the very substance of music
is too rare.
I think there is a psychological aspect to it: that the musician remains
effected by the very sound of the intervals. The grinding seconds, the
desolate fourths, the radiant thirds. These sounds still have an effect.
And then over and above this the different kind of sounds that are possible
to create at the behest of the composer: lush sounds, sharp sounds, powerful
sounds, magical sounds.
Paul Badura-Skoda continues his North American tour and I strongly recommend
that people check their local listings for concerts. The Calgary concert
was sold out and the standing ovation was a genuine expression of the audience's
enthusiasm for the performance.
Copyright © 11 March 2003
Gordon Rumson, Calgary, Canada
BADURA-SKODA'S TOUR SCHEDULE