Sátántangó

For those who have 7 hours to spare and have never seen a film by the Hungarian director Bela Tarr :  it is time to go for ‘Satantango’, the longest and most accomplished film of Tarr.  I personally rank it together with Sergei Bondarchuk’s  “War and Piece”  and Jaques Rivette’s  “Out1 : Noli me tangere” as […]

Forgotten pianists Vol. 4

It is no exaggeration to claim that David Saperton ( 1889-1970 ), who never had a major career, possessed a truly  phenomenal pianistic technique and a superb sense of sound. The virtually unplayable “Kuenstlerleben Paraphrase” by Leopold Godowsky , recorded in 1940, allows Saperton to display his limitless abilities.    

Bill Maher

One of the weekly pleasures to look forward to is Bill Maher’s show on HBO. A brilliant taskmaster and very sharp commentator on the absurdities of American politics he represents clearly ‘the better America’, where critique about the  political situation is voiced and the precarious imbalance and distribution of wealth is adressed. All in a very […]

Forgotten pianists Vol.3

Swiss pianist Albert Ferber ( 1911-1987 ) left a small recorded legacy and it is above all bis Faure and Rachmaninov recordings that seem unsurpassed until today ( see blog entry about Faure ). His first sonata by Sergej Rachmaninov is what I would call a perfect version of this highly difficult and somewhat problematic […]

Website problems

Sorry about the continuing website problems ! I am trying to improve this ASAP.The Google translate buttons are useless and produce garbled language, hence its best just to read the original postings in English. Some links do not work either, others do. Some updates, like the inclusion of the new Mendelssohn CD Album hasn’t happened […]

Paintings in Proust

Recommending books is a tricky business, and tastes are wildly different. Interest in serious literature can be a conversation killer these days, intellectual discourse  increasingly getting frowned upon. But  for those who have munched their way through one of the greatest novels in literary history, the “A la Recherche du temps perdu ” by Proust,  here is […]

Forgotten pianists Vol 2

For those who thought Ignaz Friedman’s truly spectacular Mazurkas couldn’t be matched: think again. Maryla Jonas has left a very small legacy of recordings, but her Mazurkas have — particularly in the more sombre pieces –a quality which I have not heard by any other pianist ever.I wonder whether this profound depth, which is a hallmark […]

Forgotten pianists Vol.1

It is always astonishing what gems are waiting to be unearthed  ! For example: Grete Scherzer, a totally obscure pianist without hardly any information on the net. But a sensational Gaspard de la Nuit  by Maurice Ravel , one of the best ! For the connoisseur : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixdE4gCTPrc Here is all that’s known about this extraordinary pianist: […]

Schumann last works

Here is an example  of the elusive late style of Robert Schumann. The Fughetten Opus 126 illustrate a desperate attempt to control the voices and onsetting confusion Schumann was struggling with . One of his last works it is clearly not a piece of music with an audience in mind ,rather a self dialogue and […]