Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Emil Gilels, 1940

Emil Gilels in his practice studio/library in 1940.

My father has always contended that the finest piano recital he ever heard was a Gilels recital in 1978, when the pianist was sixty-two years old (and looking far older; the pianist was to die seven years later). My father insists that the recital was magical from beginning to end.

My father says that Daniil Trifonov’s recital at the beginning of this month was at the same wondrous level as the 1978 Gilels recital.

According to my father, Gilels offered warmth and wisdom, while Trifonov offered freshness, spontaneity and the dashing brilliance of youth.

My father says both recitals are never to be forgotten.

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