Chinese-American pianist Eric Lu has been catapulted into an international career following his stunning win at the 2018 Leeds International Piano Competition. Murray McLachlan is impressed by the natural freshness and level-headed integrity of this talented young performer
Is it wrong to promote pianists for their physical appearance? Yes, says Benjamin Ivry, when placing emphasis on looks comes at the expense of recognising true talent
It’s not all about Spain for Javier Perianes. A native of Andalusia, the music of his homeland runs in his blood, but he also finds inspiration and balance in the Gallic flavours of Debussy and the Germanic gutsiness of Beethoven. Owen Mortimer reports from Seville.
Should the human failings of a man affect our opinion of his greatness as an artist? A new French biography of Alfred Cortot throws a spotlight on the pianist’s shocking wartime record as a ruthless cultural arbiter for the Nazis. Benjamin Ivry assesses Cortot’s destructive influence in musical circles during the Vichy regime.
Roman Rabinovich’s performance of the first volume of Haydn sonatas is now out on CD. Michael Church meets a pianist whose approach to music-making is informed by his love of painting and drawing.
German pianist Burkard Schliessmann explains how he has found inspiration for his latest album of Schumann by delving deep into Romantic literature and philosophy, as well as encountering the underwater world through his love of scuba
Robert Turnbull reports from Cremona Musica, Italy’s leading international exhibition for musical instruments, including the world’s only trade fair exclusively dedicated to the piano – Piano Experience.
Cradle Song of the Lonely Mother by Amy Beach
Riding the wave
London Piano Festival co-artistic director Charles Owen introduces some of his favourite moments from last year’s programme.
Pianist and composer Alan Weiss tells Jeremy Nicholas how his early musical life as a guitarist, with the sound of Segovia ringing in his ears, led him to create his own transcriptions for the piano.
Wayward, fiery and unpredictable, Heinrich Neuhaus approached his playing and teaching with the air of an eccentric and intemperate philosopher. Benjamin Ivry explores the unique legacy of a life and career that remains elusive and full of contradictions.
Classically trained and driven by alternative spiritual pursuits, Alice Coltrane’s jazz career took her down musical pathways that were at best unconventional and at worst ill-advised. Nevertheless, explains Andy Hamilton, she was a very fine exponent of modal jazz piano and the eclectic musical influences that informed her work make her a unique figure in the annals of avant-garde music.
Music of my life
American pianist Jerome Rose, founder of the International Keyboard Institute & Festival in New York, recalls his influences as a ‘grand-pupil’ of Artur Schnabel and protégé of Rudolf Serkin.