I watched a great film – Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould – the other day and since I’ve been listening to Gould non-stop (I think my brains twist into a weird knot after several hours of things like French and English Suites). In any case, I found these clips of him playing Goldberg Variations (mannerisms are of course the best part) and I must share some of them:
I’d never heard of Gould before I read your post and I just wanted to thank you for exposing me something new.
I’m learning how to play classical piano…unfortunately music is not my major and I’m just taking extra classes….Hopefully one day I will play with a quarter of his skill…
You should buy Gould’s recordings of Bach’s Goldberg Variations (he did two, in 1955 and 1981 – they are best together, you can compare his early and later styles) and listen none stop for at least a week.
“I’d never heard of Gould before I read your post . . .” –lstein88, you will probably have no idea how disturbing it was to me to read such words! Anyway, I am glad that you know of Gould now. In case you haven’t already figured it out from watching the videos, he was both an utter freak of a human being and one of the great geniuses of piano playing.
Gould withdrew from live performing fairly early in his career and thereafter played only for recordings, which he considered to be a superior form of music-making. Nonetheless, he gave recording producers a lot of trouble by his incorrigible habit of singing while playing.