Maria Bachmann and Adam Neiman, French Fantasy (Bridge). Sensitive yet bracingly incisive performances of sonatas by Franck, Saint-Saëns (the D Minor, familiar to Proustians as the model for the “sonate de Vinteuil”), and Debussy, with a lovely performance of Jascha Heifetz’s violin-and-piano arrangement of Debussy’s “Beau Soir” thrown in for good measure. Bachmann, who doubles as the violinist of Trio Solisti, is one of the outstanding soloists of her generation, and Neiman is no mere “accompanist” but a sonata partner of impeccable authority. This one’s a winner (TT).
Archives for February 12, 2013
On Monday I flew from Tampa to New York, where the weather is demoralizingly gray and soggy, with no prospects for immediate improvement. I staggered out of the plane, looked at the fog, and felt my spirits sink. Then I went into the terminal, booted up my laptop, checked my e-mail, and discovered that Bill Shinker, the man who runs Gotham Books, my new publisher, read the manuscript of Duke: A Life of Duke Ellington over the weekend and loved it. Modesty forbids my quoting Bill directly, but suffice it to say that his note made me forget about the weather.
I’m not done with Duke yet. The manuscript is now being copyedited, and I’m giving it a second editorial pass myself. I also have to finish choosing the photographs that will appear in the book (and obtain permission to reprint them, which is a horrendous chore). Nevertheless, the boss likes it, and that’s what matters most.
I just got back from Sotheby’s, where I failed to bring home the bacon–an exquisite 1931 etching by Giorgio Morandi on which I bid unsuccessfully this afternoon–but had an exhilarating, educational, and slightly scary time anyway.
Sotheby’s New York is near the eastern end of 72nd Street. As soon as I got there, I went straight to the seventh floor, where I registered and was given a numbered paddle, which you need in order to place bids. (No, you can’t accidentally buy a million-dollar painting by scratching your nose at the wrong moment, unless you’re dumb enough to scratch it with the paddle.) Much to my surprise, all I had to do was show a photo ID. I wasn’t asked to furnish proof of solvency. Had I wanted, I could have bankrupted myself several times over, and no one would have been the wiser until it came time to settle the tab….
Read the whole thing here.
“He had only one vanity; he thought he could give advice better than any other person.”
Mark Twain, “The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg”