The Slipped Disc daily comfort zone (42): There’s more to Gorecki

His harpsichord concerto, for instance. Played by a pianist with a Paderewski hairstyle.

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  • What a silly coment! And you don’t mention her name…!
    It is Elisabeth Chojnacka (born Elżbieta Ukraińczyk; 10 September 1939 – 28 May 2017) a Polish harpsichordist living in France. She was one of the world’s foremost harpsichordists specializing in the performance of contemporary harpsichord music.

  • It is not a concerto for harpsichord and strings, but a piece (not a concerto) for strings with accompaniment of a harpsichord. And it is a very primitive piece, not in the sense of Stravinsky’s primitivism which was a sophisticated, very inventive invocation of primitivism (‘primitive but with all the modern comforts’ as Debussy said), but primitive in the sense of laking ideas and sophistication. One simplistic idea is milked-out till halfway of the piece, the ‘solo instrument’ only perceptable as a noise in the background, then 1 minute where you can actually hear the soloist, then it disappears again in the hammering nonsense till 8:41 with the shortest solo in the repertoire – merely a little fragment – and then, finished. Two ideas in which hardly any thinking has gone, milked-out in fortissimo repetitions, in such unsophisticated way, without any apparant understanding of what a harpsichord is and how it combines with other instruments – it’s not serious. Even for a student the piece would have to be dismissed as incompetent.

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