Tuesday, July 08, 2008

July 'Strad'

A whirlwind tour of the July 'Strad' magazine:
  • I notice that in its list of future competition it has not mentioned the 3rd International Jascha Heifetz Violin Competition due to take place in January next year, for which I sent it the details. Shame!
  • Huge coverage of Pinchas Zukerman, who's 60 around about now. I remember a young violist (country of origin not mentioned, but it's small, though not Lithuania) who got a full scholarship to study with him in New York. He abandoned the course a) because he was asked to play in the orchestra and not with the orchestra, and b) there was some girlfriend in his home country. I suppose in 2000 skype did not exist.
  • Ruggiero Ricci is 90. When my friends and I saw him in Glasgow City Hall, less than 20 years ago, already he looked not as strong as he could be. But he still played all Paganini's 24 Caprices. He says for a while he played all of them every morning....
  • Young Charlie Siem's recording of Elgar and Grieg violin sonatas is part of the Strad 'Selection'. I could have sworn I reviewed his concert in Vilnius within the last year or two, but can I find it?
  • A DVD of the Kremerata Baltica seems to consist of Mozart-related pieces (Sinfonia Concertante, 'Eine Kleine bright Moonlicht Nicht Musi, Moz-art a la Haydn) which they have already brought out on CD, quite some time ago. Recyling, I suppose. Players include Marija Nemanyte, now playing in a fine orchestra in Valencia, Spain, Ula Ulijona (who's now playing in a string quartet in Germany) and Danielis (is??) Rubinas - of the Lithuanian component. Ulijona's contribution to the sinfonia concertante is described as 'impassive studiousness [which] brings the work its lovely mellow character. 'Impassive studiousness' - is that praise? Rubinas is described as a 'creative double bass player'.
  • The final page, which is always about two people in some sort of relationship (not necessarily romantic, though Julian Rachlin and that Dutch violinist Janine Jansen were, spoke eloquently about each other, but are no longer), this time is about two double bassists, Garry Karr (who has 10 double basses in his home) and Gavin Bryars. Garry Karr seems to have an unorthodox performance style, what with his dogs wandering around the stage during the final applause....