January 17th, 2005


A very Goode recital

Yesterday I went with my friend Seth (boyziggy came down with a cold) to see Richard Goode as part of the UC Berkeley Cal Performances series. This was the third time I'd attempted to see Goode in a solo recital; the first time I got a cold, and the second time he canceled his tour due to tendinitis. I did see him accompanying a singer once, but he didn't really do any solo pieces in that concert.

Well, it was worth the wait. Goode's playing was so expressive and beautiful, the piano sounded like it was singing. I was surprised how much I enjoyed the Mozart Rondo in Am considering I don't like much of Mozart's work. I actually liked that and the Haydn a bit better than the Beethoven sonatas, even though Goode is a Beethoven specialist. The only pieces from the concert that I was sure I'd hear before were Beethoven's Les Adieux sonata, which I have in my collection but it isn't one of my favorites, and The Girl with the Flaxen Hair from Debussy's Préludes for Piano, which is one of his better-known works. I'm not a Debussy fan either, but Goode made each of his tone paintings burst into life. The encore was also excellent, although not announced from the stage so I'm not sure what it was.

Goode made strange facial expressions most of the time he was playing, as if he were singing along to the music. I noticed this much more when I saw him in the previous recital but I was sitting much further away this time. He also appears to be getting advanced in years, so I'm very glad I finally had the opportunity to enjoy him in concert.