Lily Pons




IL Divo London

Il Divo London.mp4

Il Divo London.mpg


Rimsky-Korsakov weaves a ballad to interpret

the “1001 and one Nights’

or more popularly named as “The Arabian Nights”.

This is a compilation of the stories titled Sinbad.

Alkladin, Ali baba, prince Kalender, and etc.

The main story goes that a woman, slated for execution,

narrated to the Caliph a captivating story each night.

As a result, the Caliph liked her tales so much that she

pardoned her and kept her as story-teller.

The woman’s name was Scheherazade,

and the tales are compiled and titled

“Arabian Nights.”

In this performance,

the violinist plays a theme to depict Scheherazade

as she begins another tale for the Caliph’s ears.

Visualize the Storm,the Young Prince and the Princess, and etc.




Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1

Playing the Third Movement of this concerto,

both Masleev and Trifonov displays

mastery of the ivory keys.

There is, however, a marked difference

in the results.

Can you spot the difference?




Dina Ivanova

Competing in the Finals

of the Franz Liszt Competition

is Dina Ivanova

Dina Ivanova.mp4

Denis Matsuev (by very popular requests)


Rachmaninoff Piano Concert0 No. 2

Playing Rachmaninoff in St Petersburg is Dennis Matsuev.

The first amazing item I noticed in him was his fingers.

It is traditional for concert pianists to have noticeably long fingers

to enable them to span the distance between

two ivory keys with ease.

Matsuev  have  short and stubby fingers

which may have been responsible for his inability

to sustain notes a trifle longer.

As a result, some passages which require romantic expressions

turn out to be a bit hurried

as if whispering sweet nothings to the object of romance

become hurried and spiritless enterprise.

This catastrophe is well displayed in the second movement.

In composition, the second movement

is where the conversation between the audience and the pianist is initiated.

When started, the pianist must hold the audience in rapture towards

the third movement, or the recapitulation.

Denis missed this cue but preferred instead

to wow his audience with technical prowess.

And this he did with his flying fingers.

It sometimes appeared

that his fingers move faster than the eye could follow.

Still, I miss the romantic rapture

that this concerto is supposedly endowed with.

Incidentally, from the Third Movement

is where the theme for the song

“Full Moon and Empty Arms” is derived.

Probably Denis would perform his best

if he plays the compositions of Franz Liszt

such as the Hungarian Rhapsodies or the Etudes,

but not, of course,

the “Un Suspiro” nor the “Consolation No. 3”

These pieces are for the desperately romantics.



Native Dance

A Chinese New Year Celebration

on stage.

Native Dance.mpg

Chino Y Nacho

Venezuelan guys Chino Y Nacho

sing “Sin Ti”

Chino Y Nacho.mpg

Van Cliburn At Moscow


Rachmaninoff Concerto No. 2 in C Minor

Rachmaninoff Concerto No.2 .mpg

The Paddock Mow-Down

Now don’t guess, ANALYZE!

At first notion, I thought that this

merciless butchery of concert goers

is Paddock’s Farewell To Arms.

He planned to leave and live!

Think about it.

Come Together

Speaker Paul Ryan’s call—-


We hope both parties heard this call…

(all hands hold the rope..)

Rhapsody on a Harley-Davidson

Rhapsody on a Harley-Davidson

I’m just kidding, of course.

It can’t be done on a Harley-Davidson.

But why would I say

Rhapsody on a Harley-Davidson

if it can’t be done on a motorbike?

You might have guessed, though,

that what I have in mind is the

Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini,

and the reason for the caption is this :


This is Danill Trifonov in his characteristic posture

when he is concentrating on the notes.

Notice that this posture is assumed by bikers

when they are in a hurry to get to a diner

before the rain catches up on them.

Trifonov does reflect the notion

that he is whizzing through the composition.

Well, in fact he is!


Rachmaninov composed this rhapsody by

putting up 18 variations of a theme

played by Paganini.

The 14th variation is, however, the one that tops the others.

In fact, I believe that Rachmaninov composed 17

more variations of this theme because he wanted

to showcase the 14th variation.

14th Variation.mp4

This particular theme by Paganini is made up

of about 8 notes which were introduced

in the beginning of the piece.

The 14th variation is simply the inverted notes

of the theme and excessively stretched out

to give the listener a pleasant surprise.

You will recognize the 14th variation

when suddenly you drop your horses

to listen enraptured by the music.


Stingray Music on Shaw TV

Non-stop Music

for non-stop naps.


Stingray Recording.mp4

(10 minutes download, 2 hours playtime, best to copy on memory stick))

(if you prefer Xmas music, type Christmas in the search box)




Perfectly synchronized.

I would add a third singer for the blend.

Christmas MP3s

Bing Crosby

Brenda Lee

Dean Martin

F. Sinatra-B. Crosby

Josh Groban

Nat King Cole

Patti Page

Tony Bennett

25 All-Time Hits

25 Golden Hits

Christmas Guitar

Christmas Peace

Christmas Piano

Il Divo


Paul Anka



Sexy And I Know It.mp4

Bobby Vinton

His Greatest Hits and Finest Pertormances {Disc 2}

Consolation No. 3

The compositions of Franz Liszt are arguably too difficult technically for the other pianists. But his romantic compositions rivaled, if not surpassed, those of his good Polish friend Fredric Chopin. The nocturnes of Chopin and his ballades are susceptible to the sensitivities of women.

When Liszt did compose for the sensitivities of the heart, he is tops. His Consolations did what they are supposed to do—console.

With this particular piece, however, the music does not only console, it caresses.


Consolation No. 3.mp3

No exceptionally technical composition, this time, just plain breath taker.

Vladimir Horowitz

One of the greatest pianists of our time is Vladimir Horowitz, him with the long fingers—they always come with long fingers. He is one who not only transcribes for the piano, but rearranges the composition. And plays the rearrangement, too.

One of the tricks in doing this is to play a portion of the music theme on the left hand and playing the other portion of the music with his right. This was the conventional way of playing a piece in the Classical period. Mozart did this, so was Bach and Haydn. In those days the rules of composition were very strict, so strict in such a way that pianists are wont to play a piece a part with one hand and the other part with the other hand. In some ways, the music ended up as contrapuntal. And if the melody played by one hand compliments the melody played by the other hand then the music gets the attention that it is worth.

Vladimir Horowitz does this in Franz Liszt’ Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2. What is more amazing, though, is that he adhered to the proper Hungarian accentuation that is afforded the music. Here is the Liszt-Horowitz version:

Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2.mp3

Don’t mistake me for having inclinations for making music. In truth, I never tinkled a piano, nor scraped a violin, nor plucked a mandolin. I just have good ears, not large ears, good ears which I kept clean. How do I know the terms of music corn-position? I had a girl friend who studied in the Conservatory of Music.

I do declare it pays to have a girl friend who studies in the Conservatory of Music who would keep you very much interested.

In music, of course.

Noboyuki Tsujii

A gold medal for Noboyuki Tsujii of Japan, tied for First Place, in the Thirteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. He plays here two of Franz Liszt favorites, the La Campanella and the Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2. Although not as fast on the keys as Lang Lang, he makes up for it with special feelings added to the music. Amazing, I should say, because Noboyuki is almost blind.


Noboyuki Tsujii.mpg

(another treat for the Music Promotion Foundation)

Haochen Zhang

Tied for First Place in the Thirteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition is Haochen Zhang of China.

He plays here Three Movements from Igor Stravinsky’s Petrushka.


Haochen Zhang.mpg

(a treat for the Music Promotion Foundation)

Yeol Eum Son

Yeol Eum Son from Korea won the silver medal on the Thirteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in Forth Worth, Texas.

She plays here the Rhapsodie Espagnole of Franz Liszt. This is a bonus performance.


Yeol Eum Son.mpg

(a treat for the Music Promotion Foundation)

Lang Lang Plays Franz Liszt in London

I knew it.

The time I watched Lang Lang breeze through that Third Movement of Tchaikovsky Concerto No. 1, this guy has more dexterity in his fingers than sensitivity in his heart. His fingers fly through the chords faster than you can see them. This guy is not a Van Cliburn, and hardly can he ever be an Artur Rubinstein. He has more perfunction than feeling. A Franz Liszt repertoire would be best for him, not a Mendelsohnn nor a Chopin.


And there you have it, a Franz Liszt concert for him featuring most of what people like about Franz Liszt. I mean he played La Campanella, Un Suspiro, Paganini Variations, Hungarian Rhapsody No. 6 and Consolation No.2. Although I would prefer that he chose Consolation No. 3, instead.

He was successful in this London concert despite the disabling visual shows that made his performance both impossible and possible.

La Campanella.mpg

The intro is the “La Campanella” a theme adopted from that of Niccolo Paganini, an Italian vilin virtupso. The story goes that when Paganini hreard the church bells ring, he followed the beat of the peal with his violin , and presto, out came the piece “La Campanella” which is suppose to mimic the sound of the bells both in and out of the church. It was also said tha Paganini entered a pact with the devil to gain his virtuosity, And then came the piano virtuoso Franz Liszt whose bloated ego made him compose and play the piano pieces that other pianists find technically difficult Franz Liszt transcribed the violin theme of “La Campanella” to a piano favorite.

The pianists who would play this piece should have a bigger distance between the tip of the thumb and the tip of the pinky to reach two succeeding notes faster. Lang lang should not have such an advantage, him being oriental and such, but he manages to keep up by using speed. The “La Campanella” is a piece that pianists include in their repertoire just to show off.

Un Suspiro.mpg

This next one is a chick favorite, and happens to be the theme of the movie Song Without End, a  biographical sketch of Franz Liszt. And again we can see how Lang appears to be in a hurry to finish the piece. It is supposed to be played with religious fervor. I remember Jorge Bolet play this one in the movie, and Gary Graffman play this piece in an LP.

Paganini Variations.mpg

This one is one of Liszt’ compositions that sought to transcribe Paganini’s theme into variations. The theme is an 8-note start of the piece and the variations proceed where the piano is beaten, battered, caressed, and applauded. And we see Lang Lang for all his dexterity’s worth plowing through the variations like nothing at all. The variations of Franz Liszt ended up into etudes (musical studies) that trains and sharpens the talents of pianists. There was, however, another composer called Sergei Rachmaninoff who also composed and transcribed the same 8-note theme into piano variations, ending up into a rhapsody and not etudes. Rachmaninoff had one better on Franz Liszt in that he incorporated an orchestra into his variations. He also started for that period a different form of variation, that of inverting the sequence of the notes and elongating the note measure. The 18th variation of “Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini” is very, very popular.

Hungarian Rhapsody No. 6.mpg

Franz Liszt also sought to put into piano music the popular folk music of Hungary and to call these “rhapsodies”, the “Hungarian Rhapsody No.2” being the one used by parents to make their children like classical music. The “Hungarian Rhapsody No.6” is my favorite.  And Lang Lang accommodates the situation by playing this piece with pyrotechnics. To accomplish this, he had to have the rhythm and the beat of a drummer.  Watch him assault the piano with alacrity and determination. He had to simulate the revelry of the gypsies and the balalaika.



Janine Jansen


Janine Jansen.mp4

Song of Russia


Song of Russia1,mpg

Song of Russia2,mpg