Saturday, June 05, 2010

Polish Piano Music: The Secret

We got to attend a concert of Chopin piano music last night in Warsaw, the Chopin-mad city. It was an almost private affair in a refurbished palace with a baby grand piano, and for a strong bass , and assuming they couldn't afford a full grand, wouldn't they have been better off with an upright?

The walls were decorated with massive paintings in a mode of sedate elegance, one showing some American Indians bearing gifts to a European. But funny thing: the Indians had six toes on each foot.

What's going on here? I don't know but it occurs to me that maybe this explains the dazzling complexity of Chopin piano music. Maybe the great man himself had six fingers; maybe also his expositors. Maybe this means that the painting was done from life, and maybe it explains why only Poles can play it.

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