06 January, 2009

Famous Quotes and Vignettes

Little Known facts, Quotes and Vignettes (In this link I shall continuously add funny or interesting quotes by, and vignettes of, composers or musicians that I find illuminating, encountered in browsing, reading books and liner notes):

16/06/11 "...It was in April 1949 that the 18-year-old Friedrich Gulda first dared giving an all-Chopin recital in Vienna...Among the audience were Jorg Demus and Alexander Jenner...So impressed were they that Jenner still recalls his colleague exclaiming: "We can all pack it in now and go home"..." (from liner notes in DG's Gulda Chopin issue, written by his son Paul Gulda)

16/01/10"...(Erica) Morini's male colleagues respected her highly; Alan Evans' fascinating CD notes state that Heifetz studied with her to improve his staccato!...Her final appearance was in 1976 after which she became reclusive. During this period she was the victim of burglars who took her Stradivarius, scores, letters and photographs..." (from classicalcdreview)

07/09/09 "...Gilels defied labeling...in particular he resented being typecast as a Russian with some special hotline to the music of his homeland. A story is told how in a rehearsal of the Tchaikovsky 1st concerto the young Simon Rattle inadvertently urged his orchestra to play with more "Russian vigour," whereupon the touchy Gilels sprang up in anger from his piano stool..." (from Weitblick liner notes)

07/01/09 Once when a conductor spoke of Mozart's special "rococo perfume", Clara Haskil replied angrily: "...I don't wear any perfume myself - I'm not going to start perfuming Mozart! I don't play him either rococo or perfumed - I play what he wrote, that's all!" (from Westminster Liner Notes)

07/01/09 One of Horszowski's students, Cynthia Raim, recalls: "...He once commented, stopping me with a grimace, that a trill in a Chopin Nocturne I was playing for him sounded like a telephone ringing and he didn't want to answer it!..."(from Arbiter Liner Notes)

04/01/09 When legendary Finnish violinist Anja Ignatius performed Sibelius' serenades with Beecham, she drew to his attention some of the tempi indicated by the composer, to which the conductor replied: "Madam, he is mad! I know better what he wants!" (from Symposium Liner Notes)

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