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In Reply to: RE: Yuja speaks: "if the music is beautiful and sensual, why not dress to fit?" posted by Chris from Lafayette on April 10, 2017 at 10:12:01
She's a good pianist, but I don't think she's that good..... I think had she not been so attractive, I think she would have remained obscure.
The few works I've heard both Yuja Wang and Ayako Uehara play (notably Rachmaninoff's Paganini Rhapsody and Tchaikovsky's First Concerto), there was no comparison, Uehara was far-and-above better..... (Uehara's Tchaik Concerto One is one of the best I've heard.) But Ayako doesn't have the "looks" that Yuja has.
But it seems the people of the world have spoken, and they prefer Yuja! So do I. Nothing to do with looks - and, as everybody around here knows, I never let a performer's looks influence my musical judgement! ;-)
Ayako's problem is she hasn't expanded the repertoire..... So instead of playing music she never performed before she's playing in front of orchestras (with the same music) she's never performed with before.
I believe Ayako had a huge opportunity to become more popular, but for some reason had cold feet performing outside of Asia. I have a feeling she feared the tough critics in Europe.
Too bad..... Aside from a Scriabin piece, just about everything I've heard Ayako perform was amongst the best I've heard..... Even the Rachmaninoff Prelude Op 23-2 (bootleg), I don't think I've heard better..... (The one aspect about Ayako which is off the charts is sheer explosiveness from the instrument. This is why I once called her "Herwitz".)
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