Thursday, September 24, 2015

Stephen Kovacevich at nearly 75



Celebrating Stephen Kovacevich's forthcoming big birthday, Decca has released a meaty boxful of all his Philips recordings across the years. There's Beethoven, Mozart and Brahms galore, and brilliant Bartók with his former partner Martha Argerich, but also some of the repertoire we don't associate so much with him, such as Chopin and Richard Rodney Bennett. I went along to interview him in his gorgeous music room to help make this promotional film for the set - and also to talk to him about Argerich as part of a cover feature for Pianist magazine, an edition which should be plopping on to subscribers' doormats any moment now.

On 2 November Kovacevich is giving a special birthday concert at the Wigmore Hall in which Argerich will join him for a first half devoted to two-piano music by Debussy and Rachmaninov. Kovacevich plays the Schubert B flat Sonata in the second half. Returns only, but keeping checking...

It's still a little too early to say happy birthday, but it's never too early to listen to Kovacevich's elemental, boundary-busting musicianship. Enjoy.