More angles of the angels at Bass Hall. So dramatic and such a pretty day for an international piano competition. Thursday 5.28.09 was splendid for a semi-final round and I enjoyed my afternoon immersed in a completely different world. I kept my mouth shut and listened to the musicians, to the audience, and then read the paper for what I should have heard or appreciated.
The kids all sounded great to me. Nary a false note in my humble opinion. I've read reviews that there's grandstanding, or rushing, or a steely sound. Huh?? Mariangela Vacatello (Italy) played a Nocturne for the Left Hand that was awesome. I hope she doesn't lose points just because her right hand rested on the top of the Steinway. Ran Dank (Israel) played chamber music with the Takacs Quartet. He was absolutely fine on his Brahms Piano Quintet in E Minor. The Quartet was a tad annoying - lots of violin drama and shaggy hair shaking. It was hard to see our sensitive young man, but he sounded lovely to me. Finally, Evgeni Bozhanov (Bulgaria) an obvious crowd favorite, proved flamboyant, dramatic, and fun. I personally liked the more "modern" White Lies for Lomax by Bates. It proved intricate, familiar, and intriguing. Hmm - does it sound like I know what I'm talking about. Nah.
All in all, there's pacing. There are sound levels - loud, quiet, playful, and moody. Between movements, the silence is like the white space in a poem. Take your time, pause, and then move on. And there's plenty of drama to keep one's interest. Kinda like writing. Sometimes, there's description and sometimes there's action. Just keep turning the pages and you'll enjoy the full story or experience.
Whew! Check out http://cliburn.org for the live webcast and information. This prestigous competition keeps Ft.Worth Texas on the music map. Kudos to Bass Hall, Sundance Square, Parking lots, and the City of Fort Worth - all an entertainment experience extraordinaire.
(hiding her Billy Joel CDs for awhile)