October 21, 2012

The Public Side of Performance

During this election time, it’s interesting to note the public life of pianists – and other famous people who play the piano.

For instance, U.S. Presidents Harry Truman and Richard Nixon played the piano well, and Nixon even accompanied singer Pearl Bailey during a White House performance. Tomoko recalls that U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice played the piano for Queen Elizabeth II. Tomoko also remembers the President of Poland playing the piano. “He played the piano before the Polish Congress started, and that focused and united the gathering into one direction: to save Poland.” Tomoko continues, “His performance led to political connections,” Tomoko generalizes: “People respect you more, politically, if you can play, because people love music.” Tomoko remembers that the Japanese invited foreign pianists to perform in order to how the government’s interest and support of culture.

Tomoko too has experienced the public side of performing throughout her adult life. When Tomoko wanted to go to Europe in the late 1960s, she connected with wealth people through her piano performances; “They helped me with connections and networking,” Tomoko says. Tomoko has also performed at international competitions, and met with several remarkable musicians in these venues.

Elect to hear Tomoko’s piano interpretation of Chopin’s nationalistic compositions on her Chopin II album, available via https://www.cdbaby.com/cd/tomokohagiwara6

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