Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A 98-year-old pianist holds forth

Researching things Pennario on this snowy day, one thing led to another and I found this article from a couple of weeks ago about this pianist who is almost 100 years old, Frank Glazer.

Glazer recorded Ravel's "Gaspard de la Nuit" at about the same time Leonard did, which is to say the very early '50s. That is how I stumbled on him. He studied with Artur Schnabel. During World War II he had to leave Germany and he followed Schnabel to Italy.

God love this guy, you know?

He has done a lot of teaching including at the Eastman School of Music and more recently at Bates College, from whence I grabbed the picture up above. He talks in the story about how the teacher/student dynamic has changed. When he was a student, Frank Glazer says, you did not question your teacher. Now there is this informality which can be good or bad. He also says Schnabel used to tell you something only once and you had to remember it. Now, you have to tell your students stuff a hundred times.

He sounds like a very cool person. He was playing a program of Bach, Mozart, Ravel, Beethoven and Chopin. I wish I could have been there.

Here is Frank Glazer playing Mendelssohn's "Spring Song," a piece I love, at the very springy age of 85.

Mighty fine playing if you ask me.

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