The Kurtags and Bach

Here is one of the most remarkable music videos I have come across a long time ( thanks to Norman Lebrecht and his always informative and  inspiring site ‘Slipped Disc’ ): the eminent Hungarian composer  György Kurtág   and his wife Márta, both in their Nineties play some of their own  Bach transcriptions. No need for […]

Thomas Bernhard

A collection of interesting Film documents about Thomas Bernhard, the most  important postwar German speaking  writer  in the 20th century. His last major novel ”Ausloeschung” is one of the true great books  of modern literature. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extinction_(Bernhard_novel)  

English Music

I have been a lifelong admirer of British music. Composers like Arnold Bax ( whose sonatas and 1st symphony in its pianoversion I recorded ), Edward Elgar, Arthur Bliss, Frederic Delius, Vaughan Williams, Granville Bantock, Ernest Moeran, George Dyson to name a few  always meant a lot to me. Here is one I never heard […]

Norabakken

Norabakken is one of  2 buildings of the Barratt Due Music Institute in Oslo. It’s where the pianists sit and practice, eat and somehow seem to  live. A great place, unusual and despite some unfinished renovation work ( a euphemism for the state the building is in ) I wouldn’t want to change it for any […]

Aufschneider

For German speaking folks : the great Austrian cabarettist Josef Hader  has produced a 2 part dark black comedy about hospitals. He plays a pathologist and it is the usual wild Austrian scenario that goes with it: eccentric characters, death,love, misery,cranky women,useless men… A great achievement and once more: for top quality TV one has […]

Jacob Lateiner

I had two teachers in my life that influenced me a great deal. Here comes one of them : Jacob Lateiner, with whom I studied at the Julliard School in a masters program for 2 years. I used to have lessons with him as well before and after that in Europe. We had met at […]

Trautmann

The Austrians have not only some of the best European contemporary Art Cinema ( Ulrich Seidl , Michael Haneke ), but also produce superb TV series over the last decades. When compared with the many  flat and ‘safe’ German TV productions , which often are poor in originality, low on acting talent and relying on the lowest […]

William Bolcom

Needless to say this: there is no ‘crisis’ in contemporary music composing, there never was. Its a myth perpetuated by those who lack curiosity, an open mind and the will to say Good Bye to perceived wisdoms. If anything it is astonishing how many truly amazing composers are around,  during our life time. For example Unsuk […]