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#1977697 - 10/23/12 06:38 PM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bennevis]  
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I thought it was fascinating to watch Barenboim work with Lang Lang on Beethoven's Appassionata in this masterclass: http://www.forte-piano-pianissimo.com/DanielBarenboimMasterclass.html

Although I was never a huge fan of Lang Lang's interpretations, I respect his musical knowledge and was truly impressed by his quick grasp of what Barenboim was trying to convey, as well as his remarkable technique which enabled him to instantly turn those conceptions into music. I was also impressed by the way he respectfully collaborated with Barenboim and was willing and enthusiastic about trying the new ideas presented to him.

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#1977726 - 10/23/12 07:51 PM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bellamusica]  
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Originally Posted by bellamusica
I thought it was fascinating to watch Barenboim work with Lang Lang on Beethoven's Appassionata in this masterclass: http://www.forte-piano-pianissimo.com/DanielBarenboimMasterclass.html

Although I was never a huge fan of Lang Lang's interpretations, I respect his musical knowledge and was truly impressed by his quick grasp of what Barenboim was trying to convey, as well as his remarkable technique which enabled him to instantly turn those conceptions into music. I was also impressed by the way he respectfully collaborated with Barenboim and was willing and enthusiastic about trying the new ideas presented to him.

I agree, bellamusica. And I also sensed that Barenboim respected Lang Lang as well.

I've only heard Lang Lang in live performance once (Mendelssohn PC #1), and I thought it was top notch. Not only did he give the virtuosic passages their due, but he made the 2nd movement sing, and played it with great sensitivity IMHO. And the audience gave him his due with a standing ovation. I've also seen a few interviews with LL, and he simply doesn't strike me as a narcissist. He speaks with great humility and seriousness about music, and I'm not surprised that he would be open to learning all he could from Barenboim or any other pianist. Maybe I'm easily conned, but I don't think so.

#1977729 - 10/23/12 08:01 PM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bellamusica]  
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Originally Posted by bellamusica
... and was truly impressed by his quick grasp of what Barenboim was trying to convey, as well as his remarkable technique which enabled him to instantly turn those conceptions into music. I was also impressed by the way he respectfully collaborated with Barenboim and was willing and enthusiastic about trying the new ideas presented to him.
In my experience this description would apply to most masterclasses.

#1977877 - 10/24/12 05:45 AM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: argerichfan]  
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Originally Posted by argerichfan
Originally Posted by Nikolas
There are reasons why Lang Lang is at the very top, and while most are probably not musical...

But he certainly probes the profound and mysterious depths of the Yellow River Concerto more astutely than any other recording I have heard. It should be on BBC's Desert Island Discs.


I agree - he finds more poetry as well as plays with effortless brilliance where required in that piece than anyone else, including the likes of Yundi grin.

But my favorite recording of him is in Mendelssohn's Piano Concerto No.1, where he finds more depth and beauty in the slow movement than anyone else, as well as getting a truly Mendelssohnian fairy-like lightness of touch in the filigree writing in the outer movements, and then the fury of the final pages, which shows why technique and musicianship are inextricably linked in great virtuosi.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
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#1977885 - 10/24/12 06:20 AM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bennevis]  
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oddly, (and truely) I just watched Lang Lang's Carneghie Hall Debut last nite.

It's nice to read people write about him positively. I am blown away by his talent, in fact I might watch that Carneghie Hall DVD
again today.

I mean no disrespect but i have to think of the talented sing/dancer who produced Gangnam Style.. what a piece... Psy There is a similarity between Lang Lang and Psy and his piece.. so over the top. I wish i could dance like Psy and play like Lang Lang - I'd be so famous.

Again, thanks for not being so snarky about Lang Lang (you know who you are).


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, ├Ľun (apple in Estonian)
#1977894 - 10/24/12 06:56 AM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: apple*]  
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Originally Posted by apple*
oddly, (and truely) I just watched Lang Lang's Carneghie Hall Debut last nite.
I'm quite certain he got a terrible review for that recital. He did pause longer(with his eyes closed and leaning backwards at a 45 degree angle from vertical) after his performance of Chopin's Nocturne than maybe any pianist in history. I was going to yell "Wake up!"but restrained myself at the last second.

Only fairly recently have the reviews generally been more positive. But the NY Times review of even his most recent Carnegie Hall recital was mixed at best:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/31/arts/music/a-lang-lang-solo-recital-at-carnegie-hall.html?_r=0

But, as I have said many times, I think what LL has done to popularize classical music far outweighs any(what I see as)deficiencies in his playing.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 10/24/12 07:09 AM.
#1977960 - 10/24/12 09:43 AM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bennevis]  
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Originally Posted by bennevis

But my favorite recording of him is in Mendelssohn's Piano Concerto No.1, where he finds more depth and beauty in the slow movement than anyone else, as well as getting a truly Mendelssohnian fairy-like lightness of touch in the filigree writing in the outer movements, and then the fury of the final pages, which shows why technique and musicianship are inextricably linked in great virtuosi.

It was well reviewed and I've been curious to hear it for myself.

The last part of your post (italics mine) is spot-on.


Jason
#1983938 - 11/07/12 10:50 PM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bennevis]  
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Really enjoyed the Lang Lang concert on BB4- he played Schumann's Widmung beautifully. He had good rapport with the audience- "Let's enjoy Liszt together!" His enthusiasm for classical music I liked- he spoke of how it is passionate and exciting- so many people are stuck listening to pop music chart drivel and don't know what they are missing! A young boy about 10 plays piano brilliantly in London on a classic fm video and he says his inspiration is Lang Lang. If he continues to inspire a talented child pianist who could become a professional pianist that is good.


https://edwardianpiano.wordpress.com/

Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy.
Ludwig van Beethoven.
#1984120 - 11/08/12 11:12 AM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: EdwardianPiano]  
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Originally Posted by EdwardianPiano
Really enjoyed the Lang Lang concert on BB4- he played Schumann's Widmung beautifully. He had good rapport with the audience- "Let's enjoy Liszt together!" His enthusiasm for classical music I liked- he spoke of how it is passionate and exciting- so many people are stuck listening to pop music chart drivel and don't know what they are missing! A young boy about 10 plays piano brilliantly in London on a classic fm video and he says his inspiration is Lang Lang. If he continues to inspire a talented child pianist who could become a professional pianist that is good.


Unlike some classical musicians I could name (not just pianists), he refuses to cross over into the Dark Side, namely 'crossover', even when he plays in rock venues and engulfed in fake smoke....... grin


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
#1985174 - 11/10/12 10:09 PM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bellamusica]  
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Originally Posted by bellamusica
I thought it was fascinating to watch Barenboim work with Lang Lang on Beethoven's Appassionata in this masterclass: http://www.forte-piano-pianissimo.com/DanielBarenboimMasterclass.html

Although I was never a huge fan of Lang Lang's interpretations, I respect his musical knowledge and was truly impressed by his quick grasp of what Barenboim was trying to convey, as well as his remarkable technique which enabled him to instantly turn those conceptions into music. I was also impressed by the way he respectfully collaborated with Barenboim and was willing and enthusiastic about trying the new ideas presented to him.


I actually felt the complete opposite. To be honest, considering how much hate LL gets, I thought the performance would be downright vulgar, but it wasn't. It was just decidedly mediocre. LL's mannerisms were annoying and clearly suggested to me that he saw the first movement of the Appassionata as only a virtuoso romantic showpiece rather than an expression of deep tragedy, nobility and struggle. I then tried listening to the performance blind so that I wouldn't be distracted by Lang's stage mannerisms, at which point I just heard rather listless and mediocre playing.

This sonata has been recorded so many times, and when you have heard live recordings of say, Richter and Gilels, it's pretty clear that LL still has a long way to go, both in terms of technique and musicality.

#1985255 - 11/11/12 07:35 AM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bennevis]  
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When you think about this current crop of young people who have (mostly) had texting and handheld devices in their formative years along with diminished attention spans, could anyone other than a Lang Lang have reached such dizzying heights of popularity? I doubt it.

He gives the audience cues and guidelines with his over-emoting. They like that. It makes it easier for them to follow him and to stay attentive.

As for myself, I can't watch but if I don't know it's him, he can make me cry. There were brief Mozart passages (K.333) in Pianomania where I did just that. And it was Lang Lang, only I didn't know it at the time. If he can do that to me, with passages I've heard and played myself maybe 1000 times, he has something special.

Last edited by dsch; 11/11/12 07:41 AM.
#1985873 - 11/12/12 08:22 PM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bennevis]  
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#1986030 - 11/13/12 07:23 AM Re: Lang Lang is one of '50 Great Pianists' [Re: bennevis]  
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There was a ninety-minute program on BBC TV last night in the 'Imagine' series (which previously featured Benjamin Grosvenor et al): 'Imagine.....Do or Die: Lang Lang's Story', where the cameras followed Lang Lang and his parents and agent around in China, USA, Germany, UK etc plus extensive frank interviews with his parents (including the infamous 'go commit suicide' episode) as well as Gary Graffman, Christoph Eschenbach, Daniel Barenboim, Vanessa Latarche and Bryce Morrison, not to mention inspirational people (and animals) in Lang Lang's childhood like Horowitz and Tom & Jerry grin. And video clips of Lang Lang in various competitions and practising at home as a child, all very illuminating about how and why a teenager from China became a mega superstar yet only plays classical music. It also shows, contrary to many people's beliefs, that Lang Lang's mannerisms were already there from the age of 12 when he played Chopin's F minor Concerto in a competition in Japan.

I don't know whether people outside the UK can access this program but try on the BBC website iPlayer.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
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