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Monday, February 2, 2009

"I Was Lisa Moore's People"

Over at ye New Music Box, Frank Oteri conducts fascinating and revealing interview with two of our favorites, new-music power couple Martin Bresnick and Lisa Moore. If you don't know their work, Bresnick is an underrated composer and an enormously important teacher; Moore is one of these unstoppable superpianists who can play with one hand and spin plates with the other while yodeling and smashing bricks with her forehead. We've had a request for more Rzewski, so here she is playing Rzewski's Piano Piece No. 4 (she also discusses issues in Rzewski interepretation in the interview): And here she is playing some Bresnick. The funniest part of the interview is probably this bit—

We debated at some point whether it might be an interesting idea if I became Lisa's manager and she became my manager. So if you called up, we had "people." You'd call to speak to Lisa Moore, and I was Lisa Moore's people. And I'd say we'll get back to you or something.
—which they didn't literally do, but wouldn't that have been great! It would be like the story about that actress (which one?) who impersonated a pushy agent in order to get herself work. The whole conversation has some great insights on the composer/performer relationship, from a couple that lives it. Obviously, she gives gives him feedback on how to write idiomatically for piano, and he gives her feedback on how to interpret his scores; less obviously, she gives him a performer's perspective on how to write for any player, arguing—
I think you should put "no rubato" if you want no rubato. If you want it rhythmic, you've got to put in "tempo giusto." You've got to write something, like "insistent." Louis Andriessen writes "non vibrato." I mean otherwise, you're going to get vibrato.
—and he brings a composer's analytical eye to every score she reads ("Martin's ... coached me on basically everything that I play. And I really trust his instincts"). Unfortunately, the part of the interview where Moore says the word "meshuggaas" with an Australian accent has not been included on the accompanying QuickTime video, so you'll just have to imagine that.

1 comment:

nick said...

thank you!