Monday, 11 June 2001
Coughing not allowed. The whole auditorium clears the throat. Not to violate the prohibition. No, not to violate the prohibition, to be quiet later on.

The master pianist enters the stage: Alfred Brendel ( The public greets him with great enthusiasm. But it is absolutely silent as soon as the master sits down.

The word "pianist" is a misnomer. This man is not hammering out tunes in the corner of a honky tonk bar. This gentleman is in concert on a grand piano in a lovely old building ( Grand Piano Player would be a better title, but that does not sound right. Keyboard player sounds too American to me.

I'm illiterate as far as classical music is concerned. This is my very first classical concert, a kind of cultural defloration. I am not familiar with any of the pieces performed. The master is playing pieces that are relatively unknown, I hear during the break., I hear during the break. Well, what a coincidence, so you did not know these pieces either? Hmm.

The first half of the program proves to be just a warm-up. During the second half, the music seems to emanate from the grand piano all by itself. Amazing - the sounds from just one grand piano completely fill the entire auditorium. I fail to see any amplifiers. Are the acoustics truly that outstanding?

It is an overwhelming experience, this cultural defloration. The music is far too complex to grasp immediately. I float away on the infinite waves of sound rolling towards me. And I am deeply impressed by the energy of their creator.

It seems like a strange coincidence that the master pianist is at the origin of the wondrous sounds. For a moment the thought arises that playing a piano is like typing blindly with ten fingers. This comparison is wrong.

Till next week,
Thanks to miss Coetzee.