Catapulting into Classical

A headlong leap into music, history, and composing


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Thursday-ish Quote of the Week

I couldn’t resist posting this.

The Guardian publishes a series called “Facing the Music,” in which “Classical performers tell us about the music in their lives.”  The performers answer a set of questions, and it is very interesting to read their responses, and to compare the answers of different performers.  In a recent “Facing the Music” article, conductor Jan Latham-Koenig provided his answers, including the anecdote below.

The following quote is reproduced with the kind permission of The Guardian.  Guardian News & Media Ltd. hold the copyright to this material.

How many recordings of the Goldberg Variations do you own? Do you have a favourite?
“I have one and a half recordings of the Goldberg variations. The Glenn Gould, which is still marvellous in its own way, but the other one is essentially excerpts from a piano roll made by Rudolf Serkin in 1928. I was alerted to this performance by an extraordinary story I heard about a recital of Serkin in Berlin around that time. As an encore, he decided to play the entire Goldberg Variations, with repeats. After each variation, members of the audience left the hall, until by the end there were only two people left. When Serkin finally finished, he bowed to the two and recognised them. One was Artur Schnabel and the other Albert Einstein. It is as if the desire to hear this work live even at the end of a long recital was only totally present in geniuses on the same level as Serkin himself!”

I think you’ll find the full article devoted to Mr. Latham-Koenig, as well as the entire series, fascinating.  Do check them out!

Click here to read the entire article “Facing the Music:  Jan Latham-Koenig”

Click here to see the entire “Facing the Music” series.


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Throwback Thursday Quote – Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein“If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music … I cannot tell if I would have done any creative work of importance in music, but I do know that I get most joy in life out of my violin.”

— Albert Einstein, The Saturday Evening Post, October 1929

There is a wonderful story about Einstein introducing the world of classical music to a beginner. The story appeared in Reader’s Digest in 1955, and can be found here.