There used to be a tradition at the Moscow Conservatory were upper classmen would take a freshman pianist and give them some music of Nikolai Medtner to sight read. The music can look deceptively easy and after a few stumbles the newcomer realizes that there is still much to learn about music in general and Medtner in particular.
Medtner was an intellectual and composed music that pleased his mind as well as the ear. This January the Piano celebrates two Russian composers with ties to the Moscow Conservatory; Alexander Scriabin and Nikolai Medtner. I start with Medtner and his third concerto where the entirety of his musical life is portrayed in its three movements. Plus something from his Paris years with his Theme & Variations and one of the most melodic of his Forgotten Melodies, the Canzona Serenata.
Hear the musician that Rachmaninoff thought was the composer of the future, Nikolai Medtner on the Piano this Sunday afternoon at 5 on KPAC & KTXI.
host, Randy Anderson