What will the Travelling Piano be in 2013?
Travelling Piano was originally an idea, a dream we did not know whether we would
succeed in transforming into a reality. We did not know whether that dream would
remain just another event during just another year, a dream that would amaze people,
but which they would then forget as readily as they had discovered it.
Travelling Piano has become a brand, and now, as it enters upon its third year,
everybody knows what it is all about. The third journey will also begin in Bucharest
and will come to a close at the Jean Bart Theatre in Tulcea, where the third travelling
piano will reside in the years to come. Medias, Sînnicolau Mare, Tulcea. When
we set out, we didnt know where this journey would lead.
On this third
journey, I now recollect the various viewpoints from which I have had the opportunity
to follow the stories of the Travelling Piano. One of them was that of a radio
listener who followed the journeys in reportages from the very first recitals
in the footsteps of Franz Liszt in 2011 to the journeys of the summer of 2012,
setting out from the easternmost tip of the country, from Mamaia, and arriving
at its westernmost tip, in Sînnicolau Mare. Listening to the voices from the public
you were persuaded that the out-of-the-ordinary idea of touring with a full-sized
concert piano in tow was spectacular enough to draw people from their homes and
out of their apathy.
Another viewpoint has been the box of the Radio Auditorium,
from where you can view the stage, taking in the audience at a glance and trying
to strike a balance between what is happening on the stage, the way in which the
audience react or not, and ones own sensations on listening to the new piano
of the Radio Auditorium, played by Horia Mihail as he tackles scores of considerable
difficulty and stylistic diversity, taking in more than two centuries of musical
history and striving to transcend his limits.
the first recital in the series performed on the second travelling piano, held
in the open air on the Black Sea coast, in a genuinely unconventional atmosphere,
I turned the pages of the pianists score, occasionally catching the pages when
they were caught by the wind. The sound of the piano was very close and its impact
was as powerful as it must have been for the people on the seashore at that moment,
when the speakers at considerable distances along the beach poured forth the enveloping
tones of a piano.
I have listened to the recital and concerts of the travelling
pianist on CD and in live recordings from Bucharest and around the country. After
the twelve recitals in 2011, the impressive tour of 2012 included twenty-two recitals
in nineteen cities, and in 2013 there will be nineteen Beethoven piano moments
in fifteen cities in Romania and the Republic of Moldova. Thousands of kilometres,
tens of thousands of listeners in auditoriums, and millions of virtual listeners
via radio, television and the Internet.
In 2013, a third concert piano
will be leaving the Radio Romania studios to gladden the souls of people who at
present have all too few chances to abandon their comfy seats in front of the
television set in order to see and to listen to what can happen in their town
when a vehicle enters the main thoroughfare, mingling with the rest of the traffic,
a vehicle bearing the words www.pianulcalator.ro
and The Travelling Piano: National Tour Extraordinaire by Pianist Horia Mihail,
from which will later be unloaded a black, gleaming, elegant concert piano.