by Nicolas Altstaedt April 30th, 2013

BBT Celebrated: Nicolas Altstaedt

Cellist Nicolas AltstaedtBBT fellow in 2009, talks about why Schubert’s Trout Quintet is special to him and weighs in on our debate, “Is Talent Enough?”

Can you share a special memory about the year you received your BBT Fellowship?

I heard the news that I had received a BBT Fellowship during a time when I was working on two concerto recordings. I remember the Ebène Quartet arriving in Berlin at night, when I was just finishing my last notes of the cadenzas for Haydn’s concerto with the Kammerakademie Potsdam in the freezing Jesus-Christus Kirche in Dahlem. I joined them for a few happy hours sharing these news, before leaving in the early morning fog to take a train to my hometown, Heidelberg. I also remember listening to the edits of a piece that I had recorded three weeks before and which fitted my state of exhaustion and insomnia: the Schumann concerto.

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by Susan Rivers April 23rd, 2013

BBT Celebrated: Who Can Believe It!

Here we are just four weeks away from BBT Celebrated, with 13 events taking place at the Southbank over three days (May 17-19), and we are in overdrive.

It is incredible to think that we are now so close to seeing the fulfilment of an idea which I had over three years ago to celebrate the Trust’s 10th Anniversary. I saw it as a way to recognise the work of our enormously talented BBT artists, the involvement of founding Trustee Mitsuko Uchida and the generosity of Ilaria Borletti Buitoni and her husband Franco Buitoni. Continue reading this entry »

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by Colin Currie April 15th, 2013

BBT Celebrated: Colin Currie

Of the highly varied benefits and pleasures of being a BBT award-winner (2005), one which will endure with much affection is the camaraderie amongst us musicians during the tour organised on our behalf with Christian Tetzlaff. We made for a very heterogeneous group of violins, cello, piano, mezzo and percussion, and as we trailed our way around Europe, great ties were established. It was highly engaging to hear and see what similarly placed artists were doing with themselves and their resources, and to have the time (that most cheated of commodities) to exchange ideas concerning our approaches to careers, giving concerts, repertoire and broader aspects of life. I was very struck by this opportunity and very grateful for it – another example of the Trust giving experience over-and-above the merely and more obviously practical.

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by Christianne Stotijn April 8th, 2013

BBT Celebrated: Christianne Stotijn

Mezzo Christianne Stotijn talks about current plans, dream projects and shares her memories about receiving a BBT award in 2005:

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by Graham Fitkin April 2nd, 2013

Helical Strake

There always seemed to be a lot of spit involved. Accompanied by a certain lightheadedness and lips that no longer belonged to me. Yet it was intriguing. Coils of cold metal, pistons ready to go and a seductive bell end to the contraption.  Indeed I managed to produce occasional belches of aleatoric noise. But my own forlorn teenage attempts to make sound from a piece of brass tubing stopped soon after they started. All that air bouncing around uncontrollably. All that effort focused into a small funnel. What do you do with this sort of instrument? I was not destined for trumpeting glory. I liked the look of a piano where all the notes were laid out in front of me and I could choose them at will without having to divest myself of hard-earned saliva.

My inadequacy as a brass player still troubles me and, at some point, I will have another crack at it. But that youthful prejudice – spit and pistons and recalcitrant fortissimi – has remained with me. My admiration goes out to all brass players.

 

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