Short Stories is an album with music from various composers performed beautifully by two young German musicians: Mark Schumann (cello) and Martin Klett (piano).
The short stories in this CD are encore pieces by a variety of performers and composers. Like an author’s collection of short stories, these pieces delight or thrill for a brief moment and do not require the commitment and engagement of a novel or, in this case, of a full concerto or a set of complete sonatas.
Short Stories is suitable to anyone who loves the sound of the cello or to someone who would like a gentle, elegant introduction to classical music. Read my full review.
Murray Perahia turns 70 years old this April but his electrifying, extraordinary performances are not getting old. They are as fresh today as they were when he won the International Leeds Piano Competition in 1972. I was privileged to be at the Barbican Hall on Fri 07 April to see and hear his performance of Beethoven’s masterful Piano Concerto No. 5, known as “Emperor” in English-speaking countries. Perahia’s rendition, supported by the excellent Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, was simply magnificent and received a well-deserved standing ovation at the end. Read my review HERE or click on one of the pictures.
My new novel “The Dark Side of Dawn” launched yesterday on all amazon websites for the Kindle. It is the story of Vera, a thirty-something year old concert pianist who was abused and beaten by her husband. After a messy divorce and court restraining orders, she is recovering in the home of her childhood. Out of the blue, Vera receives a letter from a solicitor in the Azores, informing her that her aunt has recently died and has left her everything. The problem is that Vera didn’t know she had an aunt. She travels to the Azores to uncover her aunt’s story but she gets more than what she bargained for: Unexpectedly, she finds amidst her enigmatic aunt’s music sheets, a manuscript, signed Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, dated 1770…
The novel is introduced by Lucy Mauro, a real pianist, who kindly agreed to write a foreword for me. If you love music and Mozart; if you like a good, suspenseful and intriguing story; then, THE DARK SIDE OF DAWN is for YOU!
If you own a Kindle, check the novel at Amazon UK, Amazon.com or in any other Amazon site. If you own a Nook, don’t be sad! It is available for it too! Check it here at Barnes & Noble.
Cover photo courtesy of Malcolm Bull
A lovely, calming CD with music by Ludovico Einaudi performed by pianist Christine Rayner. It is for a good cause and it acts like a balm on a tortured soul! Read the review and most important, buy it. You won’t regret it!
Juan Diego Flórez’s Recital at the Royal Festival Hall, in London, yesterday, 20.01.2011: Appropriate to mention, as I recently reviewed his latest CD.
It was cold outside; I nearly froze crossing the bridge from Embankment to the Southbank Centre but it was worth it! I was not reviewing this concert but I was lucky to obtain a ticket and be there. Beyond magnificent! These were the words that my friend, sitting next to me, used to describe Flórez’s performance yesterday. It was true! Outrageously good singing: From Mozart to Rossini, Donizetti, Lalo and Verdi or modern songs by Luis Prado, Flórez was always spot on; sheer perfection, if there is such a thing, as even the “glitches” were perfect! The audience present at the Royal Festival Hall will know what I mean!
A word for the pianist, the excellent Vincenzo Scalera always brilliant in the background and very much in tune with Flórez ‘s artistry.
The mood was festive at the end of the concert, contrasting this morning with the grey, dull, slightly boring weather outside of my window (Sigh!). I suppose it means back to harsh realities of daily life, after an evening of glorious feasting on my classical music and opera addiction! Attitude: Less positive; not negative but perhaps slightly annoyed that such moments of beauty cannot repeat themselves every single day.