Sunday, August 14, 2011

I love you, Nigel Kennedy

Blimey, guv - good old Nigel is at it again. In an age when much of the world feels toothless and truthless, he hasn't lost one bit of his bite or his bark. The Guardian reports:

In a broadside at fellow musicians, he said that some were sidelining Bach into "a rarefied and effete ghetto" while others were turning "philosophical masterpieces" into "shallow showpieces". He despaired at musicians who have "learned the same technical way [and who] all play the same technical way".
A protege of Yehudi Menuhin, Kennedy wrote in programme notes for last weekend's performance that "four melodic notes from Yehudi are worth more than a thousand from any of our living violinists", adding that "Bach speaks through Menuhin's violin".
It takes someone with real passion and chutzpah to speak up like that; not many dare to. Of course, he's generalising a little... I wish he could have heard Alina Ibragimova's mesmerising Chaconne at Wilton's the other week. No doubt this latest outburst will leave his targets pretty peeved, but I don't think that's his aim. I think he speaks up because he flippin'well cares - and you can hear that in his playing. That's why he's still here and still at it after all these years.

Read the whole thing here.