Friday, May 3, 1991

Brendel in Boston

Alfred Brendel played in Symphony Hall last night. The centerpiece of the program was Schumann’s Symphonic Etudes (including the Posthumous Etudes) with all the repeats. Brendel did nothing to add variety to the repeated sections - no changes in dynamics, voicing, or phrasing - just a rote repeat. It became rather monotonous. I love the Symphonic Etudes, but Brendel proved there can truly be too much of a good thing. He really writhes on the platform - like someone put itching powder down the back of his shirt.

Saturday, January 12, 1991

Yo Yo Ma in Boston

Went with friends to see Yo-Yo Ma at Symphony Hall.  An eloquent recital of the final three Cello Suites of J. S. Bach.  He offered an encore as a prayer for peace.  There was a reception afterwards at which he was present.  The drive back was awful due to the snowstorm.  The roads were almost impassable. We didn't get back until after one in the morning.