When Yefim Bronfman performs Brahms' Second Piano Concerto with conductor Lionel Bringuier and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl on July 31, he will be tackling what is known as a real "finger buster," a term used for a work that is awkwardly conceived for a pianist's hands or physically demanding. The Brahms concerto is both.
No one ever said the life of a rock 'n' roll star was easy, and if you're the one responsible for their success, keeping an artist both successful and happy can be no less daunting
Few writers know more about the dark, sometimes scandalous workings of the music business than Norman Lebrecht, the author of "The Maestro Myth: Great Conductors in Pursuit of Power" (Simon & Schuster, 1991) and the illuminating "Who Killed Classical Music?: Maestros, Managers, and Corporate Politics" (Birch Lane Press, 1997). A longtime newspaper columnist and host of a BBC Radio 3 show, "Lebrecht Live," he won the Whitbread First Novel Award for "The Song of Names," a brilliant debut and a dazzling piece of fiction.
At age 5, long before he began writing satirical pop songs and Oscar-nominated film soundtracks, Randy Newman trekked down to the sound stage at 20th Century Fox to watch his Uncle Al conduct the studio orchestra. Uncle Alfred was only 5-feet-4, but the Newman family patriarch seemed larger than life as he conducted his intensely dramatic score from "All About Eve."