11. March 2009 · Comments Off on MQOD · Categories: Links, Quotes, Ramble

As performers we can’t even allow for the possibility that the pieces to be played that evening might not be fresh. We walk to the piano as if to a liturgy: the music is there – all that remains is for us to be ‘there’ too. Of course, we can be physically or mentally tired, or even ill, and this can affect the quality of the performance, but it shouldn’t really affect the intention of the performance. I’ve heard 17 year-olds sound jaded with a piece they’ve just learned, and 70 year-olds bursting with fresh ideas about music they’ve played their whole lives.

-Stephen Hough

I read it here.

I also really enjoyed the “train comment”, when he was making a comment later, on the same entry. Do read the comments, too!

Not only does an orchestral musician have to keep things “fresh”, but we also have to sell some music that we simply don’t care for. I don’t know if soloists, like Mr. Hough, have to do that. Would he play something he doesn’t like at all? I wonder. But really, I am hopeful that an audience member would never catch on to my disdain for a work that I’m playing. And yes, sometimes I do really hate a work that we have to play. Okay … hate is too strong … so perhaps “it isn’t my cup of tea,” would sound kinder and gentler. But no matter what, I have to give a work my complete attention and sell it to the listener.

I can always whine later. 😉

Comments closed.