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What do you think of Lang Lang?
#2987410 06/03/20 12:48 PM
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I just saw this article a few days ago,

https://interlude.hk/the-lang-lang-...9MMwQGLjevDL_6Som1SmSm3voct3yL0CUotpnK1Y

What are your opinions of Lang Lang?

For me, I disliked his style for a long time, thinking it was overboard and comical. Later on, I fell in love with many of his performance (Tristesse, anyone ???) and started to understand and appreciate his style, technique, and interpretation.

He is now one of my most favorite classical concert pianists !! smile



Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987421 06/03/20 01:16 PM
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There's a very fine line to be drawn between lyricism and maudlin sentimentality. Lang Lang doesn't find that line in this video and perhaps his demeanor has something to do with it.

Regards,


BruceD
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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987443 06/03/20 02:15 PM
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I don't care about anyone's style, I take things on a per-piece basis and put the bar very high. Very few preformances are really good and I did not yet hear one from his hand.

Looking at the videos, I see too much distraction. Just play it without weird motions or gestures please. It could be chinese manners. Or mayhe he is just acting out what the public is asking. I'll just close my eyes when I find a performance of him that cuts it for me.


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
wouter79 #2987446 06/03/20 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by wouter79
I don't care about anyone's style, I take things on a per-piece basis and put the bar very high. Very few preformances are really good and I did not yet hear one from his hand.

Looking at the videos, I see too much distraction. Just play it without weird motions or gestures please. It could be chinese manners. Or mayhe he is just acting out what the public is asking. I'll just close my eyes when I find a performance of him that cuts it for me.

I agree with that. Even when watching videos of other performers/pianists, I tend not to watch but just listen to the music.

Last edited by DreamPiano80; 06/03/20 02:20 PM.
Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987454 06/03/20 02:42 PM
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Plusses: terrific technique, has done an incredible amount to popularize classical music both in China and the rest of the world, excellent tone, infectious enthusiasm/personality

Minusses: interpretations are quite often bizarre/unmusical, is sometimes more of a showman than a serious classical musician, mannerisms mostly seem faked and extreme

Because of everything LL has done to popularize classical music I can "forgive" what I see as his shortcomings.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 06/03/20 02:44 PM.
Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987455 06/03/20 02:43 PM
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Plusses: terrific technique, has done an incredible amount to popularize classical music both in China and the rest of the world, excellent tone, infectious enthusiasm

Minusses: interpretations are quite often bizarre/unmusical, is sometimes more of a showman than a serious classical musician, mannerisms mostly seem faked and extreme

Because of everything LL has done to popularize classical music I can "forgive" what I see as his shortcomings.

Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
BruceD #2987464 06/03/20 03:05 PM
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Originally Posted by BruceD
There's a very fine line to be drawn between lyricism and maudlin sentimentality. Lang Lang doesn't find that line in this video and perhaps his demeanor has something to do with it.

Regards,

These things are subjective, so I can only say how I felt, which was similar to BruceD.

Body language and visual articulations aside, it was not an interpretation I was fond of. The musical articulations in the main section felt overdone and unnatural to me, while the middle section felt steely and virtuosic to me once he got past the opening theme of the section.


My chronological list of the top 20 composers: Bach, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Wagner, Verdi, Brahms, Dvorak, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Debussy, Bartok, Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Shostakovich.
Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987498 06/03/20 04:13 PM
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Lang Lang was very impressive and inspiring when he first appeared in the scene in 2003.

He wanted to be like Kissin. I am reminded how good Kissin is again by his Chopin Impromptus. (Mark C, what do you think about this one? :-)
Kissin Chopin Impromptus

Last edited by newport; 06/03/20 04:15 PM.

Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1
Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987508 06/03/20 04:45 PM
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Lang Lang is not my favorite pianist but I read the article and I find it quite unfair and simplistic. Most of it is more about LL attitude and impact rather than its actual playing. It is unfair because one can not hold just one person responsible of what the journalist is accusing LL of.

I find LL very often cant find the right balance between sensibility and sentimentalism (and mannerism). In His live performances he tends to accentuate this side. The same piece in a recording is more balanced, even if it is still very "romantic."

https://youtu.be/QaU4AuZ-2JQ

Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987538 06/03/20 05:44 PM
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He isn't my favourite pianist, I have to admit, but I found the article rather unfair as others have said. He isn't the only Chinese musician to have been successful, of course, although he has undoubtedly influenced parent's views on what their children could possibly achieve, but nevertheless that article just made me think the less of the journalist and more of him.

The recording of 'Tristesse' to me demonstrates a really excellent touch and tone, but frankly is, well, others have expressed it better than I can.

It's a shame, because he comes across in the few of his 'masterclasses' that I have seen as having genuine sentiments, love and understanding of music, and as an aside, as a nice guy. Unfortunately, though, I'm not really that keen on his interpretations of pieces that I have listened to. I'll persevere...

Last edited by petebfrance; 06/03/20 05:45 PM.

regards
Pete
Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987543 06/03/20 05:49 PM
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Yes - his mannerisms can be distracting but I really liked this version in contrast to this Clair de Lune which was so, so slow. The accompanying video was possibly more interesting.


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987569 06/03/20 06:44 PM
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I think Lang Lang is a fine pianist, much like Yuja Wang. He gets criticized by people who prefer to listen to music with their eyes.


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
AZNpiano #2987574 06/03/20 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by AZNpiano
I think Lang Lang is a fine pianist, much like Yuja Wang. He gets criticized by people who prefer to listen to music with their eyes.

My ears tell me Yuja far exceeds Lang Lang.


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987579 06/03/20 07:06 PM
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Lang Lang? I personally don't like his playing. He seems like a genuine person, but that's unfortunately not what we're judging.

Take the Liszt E-flat concerto, which most modern pianists bang away without any understanding of the piece - I've heard very few do it justice - Lang Lang disappointed me in that concerto, unsurprisingly.

His Rondo alla Turca from a few years ago was way too fast.


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
dogperson #2987582 06/03/20 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by dogperson
Originally Posted by AZNpiano
I think Lang Lang is a fine pianist, much like Yuja Wang. He gets criticized by people who prefer to listen to music with their eyes.

My ears tell me Yuja far exceeds Lang Lang.

You are entitled to your aural opinion, but I'm glad you're not one of those people who also criticize Yuja Wang's music with their eyes.

I like Yuja a little bit more than Lang because of her impeccable taste in repertoire. But they are about the same level in terms of technical brilliance and depth of musical thoughts.


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
AZNpiano #2987660 06/04/20 02:23 AM
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Originally Posted by AZNpiano
I think Lang Lang is a fine pianist, much like Yuja Wang. He gets criticized by people who prefer to listen to music with their eyes.

My thumbs up !! smile

(On a side note, I think Taylor Swift gets many awards or popular by her look rather than her music... but that is not even piano smile )

Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987668 06/04/20 03:04 AM
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Originally Posted by DreamPiano80
(On a side note, I think Taylor Swift gets many awards or popular by her look rather than her music... but that is not even piano smile )

In the pop business, the look is part of the performance. But that said Taylor Swift is a great professional. She works a lot and her clips as well as concerts are perfectly staged. I am not a fan of her songs but i have to admit this is high quality work, most of the time. So she deserves her success, if that has any sense in the pop biz !

Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987673 06/04/20 04:16 AM
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<<
Because of everything LL has done to popularize classical music I can "forgive" what I see as his shortcomings>>

Yes! I’m glad you said it twice. smile


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
DreamPiano80 #2987674 06/04/20 04:27 AM
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What a relatively negative article. Where are the videos the writer said he linked?

“ To validate my point, I am posting videos of two spike-haired, tuxedo-clad, head-bobbing 5-year-old pianists, who have achieved “stardom” via television appearances on the Ellen DeGeneres Show, playing piano in a spectacular but uncouth fashion, and became wildly famous when their footages went viral on the internet.”


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Re: What do you think of Lang Lang?
AZNpiano #2987692 06/04/20 06:23 AM
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Originally Posted by AZNpiano
I think Lang Lang is a fine pianist, much like Yuja Wang. He gets criticized by people who prefer to listen to music with their eyes.
Not true in my case and this instance because I didn't watch the video, just listened. I know that I find his movements off-putting, so I just scrolled down away from the video and listened.

My objection was that in the first section there were too many short pauses, the sort of thing one does to emphasis a note or phrase, but nothing came across to me of the emphasis, just short pauses that destroyed the flow, and there seemed to be too many. Kind of irritating, really. It is, of course, just my opinion. It's a shame, because the 2nd part had some wonderful moments, but by the time it had got that far I was fed-up with what I was hearing.

The comparison with Yuja Wang is interesting. She is, of course, much less 'mobile' when playing which I find preferable when watching. Who is the better pianist? That's another matter, and one that I am not qualified to comment on.

But, as I said earlier, I thought the article rather unfair and will listen to more of his performances because there is certainly something there of value - so perhaps it's just that I don't appreciate etc..


regards
Pete
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