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Alicia de Larrocha

Discussion in 'Pianists' started by PJF, May 20, 2008.

  1. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    I've recently discovered her Granados Spanish Dances. I just fallen in love with her. She exudes a warmth and innate musicianship that is almost entirely unique, IMO.

    What are your opinions on this little Barcelonian lady who makes such a huge sound?!



    OT, PS: I've been rehabilitating myself for the last five months after a shoulder injury; It's mind-bogglingly frustrating to not be able to move the way I want to at the piano. But it is getting better all the time. Patience....doctor says I'll eventually regain 100% use of the shoulder.

    I'll try not to be a stranger, but I've been a bit low in spirits; with a useless left arm, I don't much feel like playing anymore. Well at least I pulled of a few nice recordings. Sorry for blogging.

    Pete
     
  2. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    She's always been one of my favourite pianists although I have to add that is largely in Spanish repertoire. Nobody touches her there. In other repertoire she is good without being especially excellent. Her playing is so incredibly supple, vital, vibrant, colourful, intense.... all that one wants in Spanish music, and much more.

    So did you manage to get your shoulder hurt ? Been playing American football again ?
     
  3. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Her Albeniz and Soler are quite pleasant to the ears :)
     
  4. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    I love her personality; she's like a sweet little granny, the one who always has milk & cookies waiting for you. :lol:

    OT PS: No football, but I am in the habit of engaging in risky activities (I should know better!) I was riding my bike (a road bike with the skinny tires) going about 40kph; I hit a rock and went flying into a ditch shoulder-first, nothing was torn or broken, but I bruised my joint really badly, so I look a bit like John McCain when I try to lift my arm. Thank God (ironic) there were no cars around! Physical therapy WILL fix it; it's just such a long, drawn-out process---I want to play!!! (Yells in frustration) At least I can still rip the Chopin 10/1 :lol: :x
     
  5. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I wish she were my 'granny'.
     
  6. nathanscoleman

    nathanscoleman New Member Piano Society Artist

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    :lol: that sounds dirty :roll: ... maybe it's the 'quotation marks'
     
  7. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I said 'granny', not 'daddy' (sugar-daddy, that is). (Although I wouldn't mind one of those too. :lol: :lol: )
     
  8. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Leave it to Nathan to find quotation marks "dirty". :lol:
     
  9. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Alicia de Larrocha has very small hands, and that somewhat limits her repertoire; for example, I don't believe she plays much Rachmaninoff. She did manage to play the Rachmaninoff 3rd Concerto though. In situations like that, she frequently does considerable redistribution of the music between the hands where practical.

    She's always been very hard on herself for being a sometimes wife and mother due to her long periods away from home while on tours. She feels that she and her family have missed a lot for that reason, and she always feels remorseful about her career in that particular regard.

    I do think she's a wonderful artist. I once saw/heard her at the Tanglewood Music Festival where she played the Schumann Piano Concerto with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, William Steinberg conducting. My wife and I had a box left of center with a perfect view of the stage. It was a marvelous performance that drew a very enthusiastic reaction from the audience.

    In Spanish music, I think she's tops.
     
  10. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I did not know that. Too bad, now I can't use that as an excuse. :wink:

    I've listen to a lot her playing Granados, lately. Also Douglas Riva, another fine player.
     
  11. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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  12. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    This shocks me too. I did not realize she was that old already. She was always one of my favourite pianists, and I'd give anything to be able to play a Spanish piece like she did. I wonder who will take her place as the undisputed doyen of the genre.
     
  13. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Probably no one. And amazing to me is the article mentions that even with small hands, she could reach a 10th!
     
  14. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Seems likely. There are plenty of people who can play Spanish musc excellently, but there's not one that stands out so far as she did.

    I doubt that. I have not got small hands (well, not real big either) and I have to stretch wide to take a 10th, as well as go in front of the keys instead of above them. Even if one could get the thumb and pinky in one horizontal line (I can almost but not quite) a small hand would just not cover the distance. I read that she had developed a special technique to facilitate these sort of things.
     
  15. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    What – you mean not everything you read in the papers is true? :wink:

    I can play a 9th fairly comfortably, but a 10th I can only touch the edges of the keys and I mash down a few keys in between too. So if you say that even you can’t reach a 10th, then she must not have been able to either. I wish there was something like a button we could press and then some kind of extension would pop out of our thumb and pinky. :idea:
     
  16. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I can reach a 10th, but I would not say it's comfortable, and I would not be able to do so if my hands were any smaller. But maybe it's all size that counts. the most.
     
  17. Lukecash

    Lukecash New Member

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    Just for the sake of being a bastard I'll let you know that my hands let my reach a 13th. :twisted:
     
  18. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    That would come in handy some times :roll:
     
  19. Lukecash

    Lukecash New Member

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    Actually, that brings to mind: Is it true that Chopin slept with wine works between his fingers in his youth?
     
  20. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    :?: We're supposed to be talking about Alicia de Larrocha here...
     

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