Experience pianist Janina Fialkowska performing Franz Schubert's Impromptus, Op. 142, with these exclusive videos that CBC Music recorded live at the CBC/McGill Series in Montreal on Feb. 25, 2013. Read on to learn why it took Fialkowska so long to play Schubert.
"These are very serious pieces for me," says Fialkowska about these four Impromptus. "Schubert is a composer that all my life I've worshipped, but that I thought was beyond my reach because I always said to myself, 'I can't play Schubert until I have done everything else.' I think that Schubert is a composer that is deceptively innocent-sounding, very difficult to pull off ... because in fact there are no extremes, there is no Grand Canyon, there is no Niagara Falls. It's more like a wonderful meadow, with a whole lot of life going on underneath."
"With Schubert, you get this wonderful innocence," Fialkowska continues, "his feeling of a Viennese whatever — and then when you start digging, and when you have experience (as I sort of do now) you realize how much more there is to Schubert, and how actually disturbing it can be. To put it bluntly, there's a lot of death in Schubert. There's a lot of morbidity underneath, and this incredible beauty as well, and complexity. And yet, it has to all sound rather innocent and naïve and simple. And that's why I was afraid to play Schubert."
"And then I got married," Fialkowska recalls with a smile, "and [Schubert] happens to be my husband's favourite composer. And my husband just turned to me one day and said, 'Listen, it's time, because if you wait much longer you're not going to play Schubert.' So then I started 10 years ago and I haven't looked back."
Quotes taken from a conversation with CBC's Jeanette Kelly (part of our feature video documentary coming to CBC Classical on June 30). More exclusive videos from Janina Fialkowska's CBC/McGill recital (recorded live at Pollack Hall in Montreal on Feb. 25, 2013) are available from CBC Music's Concerts on Demand.
on Jun 20, 2013