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Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
#2021423 01/26/13 01:03 AM
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Serge P. Marinkovic, MD

Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021434 01/26/13 01:48 AM
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Sounds like it was an astounding concert

Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021479 01/26/13 04:14 AM
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The writer of this article comes off like a donkey. He just lays into the artist, and obviously doesn't understand anything. He should get a job.

Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
landorrano #2021483 01/26/13 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by landorrano
The writer of this article comes off like a donkey. He just lays into the artist, and obviously doesn't understand anything. He should get a job.


It didn't seem he laid into Lupu at all to me, though, clearly the author doesn't understand acoustics. Parts of the review were rather laughable.



"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

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Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021487 01/26/13 05:18 AM
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Hi Stores.

"every run that has lost some definition"
"lack of ideas"
"repertory newer to him"

This article drips disdain. The critic seems like a college kid getting his kicks.



Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021571 01/26/13 11:20 AM
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The review is also factually incorrect. He says:

"Those discriminating men must rise from their gramophones and go hear Mr. Lupu live to be updated on the composers whose work he has never recorded. Among them are Franck and Debussy..."

In fact, Lupu has recorded BOTH Franck and Debussy. They even appear on the same album, a recording of the two composers' violin sonatas with Kyung Wha Chung.

Bad research from Mr. Woolfe, I guess.


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Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
landorrano #2021603 01/26/13 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by landorrano
Hi Stores.

"every run that has lost some definition"
"lack of ideas"
"repertory newer to him"

This article drips disdain. The critic seems like a college kid getting his kicks.


"For every run that has lost some definition there is another that has grown brighter and crisper."

"His silken take on the impromptus was so absorbing as pure sound that it was easy to be distracted from its lack of ideas."

"Mr. Lupu was more fascinating in the repertory newer to him."



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Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021612 01/26/13 12:46 PM
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Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021632 01/26/13 01:27 PM
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I thought it was a strange review. Hard to tell if the reviewer liked it or not with the good/bad comments sometimes in the same sentence. Or maybe he liked some things and didn't like others and so it should be considered a mixed review.

I think there were some confusing statements in the review.

"For every run that has lost some definition there is another that has grown brighter and crisper."(The reviewer was so familiar with Lupu's previous recording that the could compare individual runs?)

"His silken take on the impromptus was so absorbing as pure sound that it was easy to be distracted from its lack of ideas." (Lupu's ideas or the composer's ideas? Kind of bizarre to think the reviewer could mean either since Lupu has a reputation as one the greatest Schubert interpreters and few would find the Impromptu's so weak as to be lacking in ideas))

I guess the only thing surprising about the review is that there was anything negative at all since Lupu has a reputation as a truly great pianist. Perhaps someone can find some older Carnegie Hall recital reviews. I heard him a few times there because he played on the Great Pianists series that I used to go to. But I don't remember how the reviews of his recitals were back then. I'm guessing they were extremely good.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 01/26/13 05:33 PM.
Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
BruceD #2021667 01/26/13 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by BruceD
Originally Posted by landorrano
Hi Stores.

"every run that has lost some definition"
"lack of ideas"
"repertory newer to him"

This article drips disdain. The critic seems like a college kid getting his kicks.


"For every run that has lost some definition there is another that has grown brighter and crisper."

"His silken take on the impromptus was so absorbing as pure sound that it was easy to be distracted from its lack of ideas."

"Mr. Lupu was more fascinating in the repertory newer to him."





"Lack of ideas" but "so absorbing as pure sound".

This is like a scene in a movie where a fashion snob says with an o' so subtle smirk to a plain jane "I just love your new hair-do, it is pure ... pure fashion."

This article drips disdain.


Last edited by landorrano; 01/26/13 02:30 PM.
Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
landorrano #2021685 01/26/13 02:52 PM
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Originally Posted by landorrano




"Lack of ideas" but "so absorbing as pure sound".

This is like a scene in a movie where a fashion snob says with an o' so subtle smirk to a plain jane "I just love your new hair-do, it is pure ... pure fashion."

This article drips disdain.



I thought the reference to 'lack of ideas' to mean the music, not the performer: ''its lack of ideas", not his lack of ideas.


"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."
Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021746 01/26/13 05:40 PM
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I am going to go out on a limb here, I am a bit confused what is the issue with this review. It sounds as if he is saying the concert was good?

Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
bennevis #2021759 01/26/13 05:57 PM
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Originally Posted by bennevis
Originally Posted by landorrano




"Lack of ideas" but "so absorbing as pure sound".

This is like a scene in a movie where a fashion snob says with an o' so subtle smirk to a plain jane "I just love your new hair-do, it is pure ... pure fashion."

This article drips disdain.





I thought the reference to 'lack of ideas' to mean the music, not the performer: ''its lack of ideas", not his lack of ideas.


Correct. I think at least one person needs to read the review again.

Last edited by stores; 01/26/13 05:57 PM.


"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $

Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021768 01/26/13 06:10 PM
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I saw him a couple of years ago at Carnegie Hall. He played D960, slowly but faster than Richter, Appassionata and Janaceck's In the Mists. It was mesmerizing but also a bit idiosyncratic. Nonetheless, that we were in the presence of a great artist was never up for discussion. I do not recall what the reviews were but I don't recall reading a negative review, for what the latter is worth.

Last edited by Andromaque; 01/27/13 01:09 AM.
Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021837 01/26/13 08:43 PM
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I was lucky to hear Radu Lupu play on Thursday and, for me, it was entrancing. 'Andromaque' is right about the mesmerizing and idiosyncratic quality... He also has an odd, still stage presence -- he doesn't seem to be there for the audience and barely acknowledged the crowd. But the sounds he created from that piano were pure magic and I thought he had an amazing sense of melodic line and shape.

I could see how the NYT review was a bit mixed. The Schubert had a few odd moments which might have been jarring to some. Mostly lovely, though. The Franck was stunning, and the Debussy was totally dreamy. I almost forgot to breathe during his encore, also Debussy I think.

The crowd seemed a little mixed too. I think most were begging for just a little more, while a puzzlingly large number were heading for the door after the Debussy Preludes. They were, awkwardly, stopped in their tracks by Lupu's lovely encore. Anyone who actually made it out the door totally missed a treat!

Another review of Lupu's performance seemed more appreciative of his gifts: [http://www.bachtrack.com/reviews/view/2165] In particular, this reviewer (David Allen) said:

"He has a unique sound, seeming to breathe with the concert hall's very air." -AND- "With Lupu, it is the sound that fascinates. He seems rarely to produce from his Steinway. Rather, the sound emanates, often in a hazy (but in no way vague) texture, and with a quietness that defies physics to spread to the back of the hall. Incredible lightness of touch is somehow married to cavernous depth of tone, with keys depressed so truly that Lupu is able to control the sound long after other pianists have given up. That emanating sound ruminates, lamenting its own transience and yet remaining seraphic. When silkiness gives way to a bear's fist of power in the instrument's lowest octaves, as in this recital's Franck, Lupu fully reveals that his command of the piano might be gossamer to the touch, but it is impregnable underneath."

This was my first time to Carnegie Hall (Sprang for a box seat! fabulous and fun!), and I definitely felt fortunate to hear Radu Lupu play on my first experience. A fascinating and beautiful evening. My ears are still happy.





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Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
kwoli #2021866 01/26/13 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by kwoli


Another review of Lupu's performance seemed more appreciative of his gifts: [http://www.bachtrack.com/reviews/view/2165] In particular, this reviewer (David Allen) said:

"He has a unique sound, seeming to breathe with the concert hall's very air." -AND- "With Lupu, it is the sound that fascinates. He seems rarely to produce from his Steinway. Rather, the sound emanates, often in a hazy (but in no way vague) texture, and with a quietness that defies physics to spread to the back of the hall. Incredible lightness of touch is somehow married to cavernous depth of tone, with keys depressed so truly that Lupu is able to control the sound long after other pianists have given up. That emanating sound ruminates, lamenting its own transience and yet remaining seraphic. When silkiness gives way to a bear's fist of power in the instrument's lowest octaves, as in this recital's Franck, Lupu fully reveals that his command of the piano might be gossamer to the touch, but it is impregnable underneath."
I find that review almost hysterical in its level of BS and its lack of any real meaning.

1. What is a sound that "breathes with hall's air"?
2. What are "keys depressed so truly"?
3. "That emanating sound ruminates, lamenting its own transience and yet remaining seraphic." The reviewer needs a shovel.
4. "He seems rarely to produce from his Steinway." Is he playing a Yamaha or maybe a kazoo?

Last edited by pianoloverus; 01/26/13 09:43 PM.
Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021886 01/26/13 10:27 PM
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Haha. That guy is a flowery writer to be sure. BS or descriptive -- sometimes it's a fine line.

Believe it or not, behind the florid prose, seemed to me that he captured the essence of the evening. I know it sounds funny/ridiculous to say "breathes with the hall's air" but Lupu sort of did that... He has a unique sound which I am sure I would fail to describe properly. Guess you had to be there. wink

And glad you had a laugh at least.


1909 Steinway Model A
Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2021957 01/27/13 03:03 AM
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I've read far more illuminating reviews here on the Forum, from people who really know the piano. This NYT reviewer gets too wrapped up in his elaborate prose and loses his message as a consequence. And why shouldn't Lupu sound different listening to him on speakers than live in a concert hall? Everyone should sound different when recording through mics, amplifiers, soundboards, and then played through home speakers.

Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
kwoli #2021985 01/27/13 05:58 AM
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Originally Posted by kwoli
I almost forgot to breathe during his encore


Lovely.

By the way, the quote from the David Allen review is lovely too. Just to split hairs, though: the use of the word "ruminate" in english is curious to european ears !

Last edited by landorrano; 01/27/13 06:11 AM.
Re: Radu Lupu Carnegie Hall Review
Serge Marinkovic #2022247 01/27/13 04:27 PM
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I feel over the last 5 years the quality of recital reviews has diminished considerably so much so that I no longer look forward to reading them as I used to. The global NY Times reviews of European concerts are much more detailed and interesting to read nut the NY edition has lapsed into mediocrity.


Serge P. Marinkovic, MD


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