Style and concept
Two young pianists of outstanding promise,
by BILL NEWMAN
Most often one has to go to the Wigmore Hall or The South Bank's Purcell Room to hear the fruits of what one previously witnessed at London's Steinway Hall in Marylebone Lane, off Wigmore Street. Sometimes, I am disappointed, perhaps due to the fact that the professional engagement reflects a more challenging attitude to music making that places the young artist in an unfair situation viz à viz others all aspiring to achieve top recognition with the press and public, alike. The former generally end up siding with the musical agent or, perhaps a record company -- a fruitless exercise because they bring little constructive element to bear on the individuality of the performer's art -- while the latter are more sincere in their immediate appreciation of what they have just heard; of much greater value to the young performer, irrespective of whether they have begun to plumb the performing depths to discover the music's message.
Suddenly I find myself in the position of cutting down on my concert-going and switching off most of the celebrity recitals on BBC Radio 3, where much garbage is churned out by female announcers reminding listeners about those latest additions to their Young Generation scheme -- just a few of whom I welcome -- and eulogising about the Christmas Bach, which should terminate about Easter 2006.
My CD collection caters for my permanent desires and fresh revelations, but where do I discover those fresh new talents, hopefully wanting to break into the commercial circuit? Obviously at select small venues with their unspoilt, overall attitude to the best on offer and, like Steinway's Keyboard Charitable Trust, more intelligent from a listening-learning standpoint. Much can be gleaned from scanning people's expressions and their frequent, pleasurable slants of understanding.
Copyright © 21 December 2005
Bill Newman, Edgware UK