all things mitsuko

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just got caught in absolute down-pouring running from subway and i currently sporting winter thermal gears combatting air conditioning in office (it’s currently 24degC + 95% humidity outside…).  So, friends and the bavarian radio symphony orchestra are coming to NY along with Mitsuko Uchida!!  almost fell out of my seat in excitement hearing that… except she’s actually playing Beethoven piano concert #4 instead of #5… still have 8 months to learn more about #4… If i could get some tips on how to get reasonably priced tickets with good sound in Carnegie hall that’d be greatly appreciated (Stray 🙂 ).  There’s already plans for backstage meeting and some late night NY pizza dinner.  The last few extended trip to Munich has been great fun as i’ve progressively getting to know more this new friend.  Normally he would be too busy for chit-chatting but this time due to a forced vacation (to his delight), we were able to share lots of conversations. he was genuinely immersed in my arctic slides and i in their Armenian ones (the poor country almost went bankrupt paying Placido Domingo’s enormous fee for his visit!!), with lots of fiddling on google maps to sort out world history and where everyone has been.  Insider stories on tours are great, and one way or another we’d always end up with conversations about jumpers for “AC condition” in the US (“this mountain was quite cold, we had to put on our AC-condition sweater!”)

Anyhow, i realized something after this last trip to europe: the musical reward is immense when you can identify with the music. There’s a huge contrast between my trip last year and this. The point is that i can learn to like #4, but it’s on entirely different level to hear what you really love multiple times… In any case, i CANNOT find the rest of this concert anywhere, please please somebody, anybody, who has a clue how i can find the rest please send info my way. Just paid 9€ at the Berliner Philharmoniker site to hear her playing on their digital hall repository… But i really want to hear maestro Seiji Ozawa take on the first and second movements…

There’re many versions of this piano concert on the net, but Mitsuko’s version reached my brain the same way VK’s singing does… very subjective i suppose since we all hear things differently… but she has a very clear intention of playing piano/pianissimo/transitioning and those very subtle drop/increase in intensity are what transpire emotions. Anyhow, this is yet another version i quite like. the orchestra is a bit generic, but quite love the pianist’s take… starting here.

mitsuko uchida live on bbc3

link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/bbc_radio_three
when: now 16h EST, first movement just started
what: beethoven piano concerto #5 with Sir Colin Davis conducting
where: Barbican hall, London

she’s using her own piano, the 3rd, “youngest one”, and “he’s not fat, not loud, he has the ability to make the softest sound” (of the 3 she owns), she said. interesting she calls it a “he” and not “she”…

Edit:
after 24hr from the broadcast, you should be able to listen again here for the next 7 days.

playlist for weekend

starting with

which came from this AIDS-Gala 2011 concert happening last week in Berlin. The duet features the 2 main singers in the recent BBC-3 radio broadcast listed over at Eyes, which I now done listening. It sounds really like Rossini’s La Cenerentola. At the end of that performance was 2 really beautiful arias sung by Simone Kermes.

Currently on the playlist is the Lunch Program on BBC-3 radio last week by Anna Caterina Antonacci, really wonderful. I’d recommend the entire program, nothing beats piano and voice in intimate setting, *love*. Think i’ve also read a raving review somewhere, probably by Intermezzo who went to see her live at Wigmore Hall that noon.

So i’ve just read a quick interview of Mitsuko Uchida somewhere… oh, here, where she talked about “reversed racism” and the fact that competition should be fair and offers should be for qualified candidates rather than “bending backward” to accommodate minorites… It’s a big subject i guess, but I’d say I disagree with her because that statement would work if the world is fair to start with and that everyone has equal opportunity from the time they were born. Of course it does not solve the obvious problems that sometimes people with less qualifications might be chosen above those who might be considered better… but again, equal opportunity is what we should be working for in this world in my opinion… I mention Mitsuko because i admire very much her arts, and that she’s actually on BBC-3 radio as well in a program conducted by Sir Colin Davis, which is coming next after Antonacci… ah, and have a visit to this concert by Veronique Gens as suggested over at Anik’s as well, very nice!