ALL ARTS Performance Selects

FULL EPISODE

Pianomania! Elisabeth Leonskaja

Pianomania! showcases some of the most promising piano talent from around the world. Austrian musician Elisabeth Leonskaja was awarded the 2020 lifetime achievement award from the International Classical Music Awards. In this 2018 recital, she plays Beethoven's Piano Sonatas No. 30 - 32, op. 109 - 111.

AIRED: June 29, 2020 | 1:11:55
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
TRANSCRIPT

I'm Julia Bullock, inviting you to join me

as "All Arts" presents Elisabeth Leonskaja's

stirring presentation of

Beethoven's 30th, 31st, and 32nd Piano Sonatas.

♪♪

I'm so excited to share this performance with you.

There's the performer herself, Elisabeth Leonskaja,

and when she steps out onto the stage,

she walks behind the piano, bows unassumingly,

and then immediately sits down to play.

She really is just there to share this music, and no more.

Then, there is Beethoven's music.

♪♪

2020 marks the 200th anniversary of his birth.

He is universally considered

an artistic giant of great influence,

but admittedly I don't find myself

just listening to Beethoven's music.

I'm going to be ridiculed for saying this,

but I find when I do just listen,

the music feels bombastic or weirdly impersonal.

But when I watch his music being played

as well as listen to it

and I see other human beings put through

the paces of his music,

I can grasp Beethoven's ability to call out to our humanity,

drawing us to attention and into focus.

In the hands of Leonskaja,

where we are immersed in Beethoven,

his music becomes immediate.

There's tremendous mobility in her playing

while also being uproarious when Beethoven demands it.

I found myself brought to tears

several times throughout this concert.

I hope you enjoy.

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[ Applause ]

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