A pianist who stands out from the crowd
Another week. Another terrific young pianist. Ho-hum.
Okay, folks; I'm just kidding. When the arrival of another outstanding young pianist becomes ho-hum, it's time for a classical presenter to walk into the sunset. There are just so darned many of them, it makes it hard for even the really, really good ones to stand out. But when one does, it's time to take notice. And one just did.
He's 19-year old British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor. You'll hear what I first heard on your computer when you click on his name, Chopin's Scherzo No. 1. Wow, huh? I mean, he's got speed to burn and a huge range of sound. So of course do plenty of other pianists. But he also plays with the elusive, hard-to-define qualities that cannot be assumed from even the most gifted. Call them flair, abandon, imagination, personality, panache (a favorite critic word) -- you know when you hear them, and know when you don't. I hear them here, in abundance. Don't you?
Grosvenor's rendition of the Chopin Scherzo No. 4 comes up in Tuesday afternoon's WFCR classical music, and we'll play more from this new CD over the next several days. And a memo to next week's OYP (outstanding young pianist): You had better bring it. The bar has just been raised.