Elegy for Toothpaste

Midtour; slight insanity.  The alarm goes off at half past five, and there is a (black, prepaid, lemon-scented) car waiting outside muttering in various dialects, burping greenhouse gases into frigid 91st Street, with its windswept foothills of filthy ice.  Away from city joy, away from my beloved grottos of iniquity, away from my slothful intellectualism, away from my disgusting carpet which I have meant to replace for years!  No—these must be left behind, for balmy palmy Florida!  The lemony hearse waits.  All roads these airporty days lead through the X-ray machine … can it see my soul? … or through that cute, plump machine (made by GE!) that spurts air at you and then calculates your emanations.   Even the dust coming off me tells a tale, the dust which adheres to me now, the dust which I will become.  (Oh, I’m so deep!)

Some morning soon I fully expect to be stopped by a TSA official, who will say:  “Mr. Denk, President Obama has alerted us that you are far too much of a pain in the a** to fly today.”  And I will abjectly consent.  “Go home,” they will say, “write a poem, eat a bagel, have a massage, do a crossword puzzle, fall in love, and then, only then, come back. ”  I will kiss that TSA official.  From my bed, somehow, in my underwear, I will then record the piano part of the Franck Sonata and email it off to Myrtle Beach or Peoria or wherever, and some Denk Stunt Double will be found to sit at the piano, thrashing around a bit, but not too much!, looking up at Josh every so often, assessingly, caressingly, oh-so-artistically, while my recorded performance is played … meanwhile the real Denk sits throned half-nude amidst a thousand takeout containers on his moldering carpet and inhales ginger and lemongrass and contemplates the various vessels in which he has entombed the word “love.”

I was tired.  29 hours passed, after this alarm went off, and several mood swings swung.   (Have you ever travelled from misery to ecstasy on the magic carpet of a pulled pork sandwich?  I have.)

Now it’s a sunny Florida day.  Josh, Josh’s assistant H, and myself are in the car.  We share a terrible, terrible predicament.

Despite the millions of times I have packed my suitcase, I still regard each packing “event” as a kind of metaphysical decision, a harrowing choice of self.  Am I the person who cares not for image?  Pack a hoodie and black sneaks, maybe some underwear, and your concert clothes, and fill the rest of the suitcase with Horace, Pound, Susan Sontag.  Or, am I the snazzier metrosexual?  Suddenly, my suitcase blooms with flowered shirts, orange sneakers and strange shirt-jacket amalgams, leaving no room for verse.  (Always pack a notebook; then, you say to yourself, I can “work on my writing.”)  In the midst of this decision–this quasi self-realization–one often forgets one’s toiletries!  A concert without deodorant is not to be tolerated, especially by the pageturner.  And so, at the eleventh hour, you assemble your sundries.  Don’t forget your music, you idiot!!!  And fill the humidifier.  Hide incriminating evidence.  Breathe.

Believe me that no piece of fabric has ever suffered as deeply as my Tumi toiletry bag.

The real sorrow of my life, the real criminal undermining my every best effort, is toothpaste.  There has been a recent falloff in toothpaste tube design:  Crest has decrested, has headed (if you will) down, and out, the tubes.  Now, every time I pull my toiletry bag out of my suitcase, and set it upon the faux marble of my hotel bathroom counter, next to the wildly percolating coffee maker, I unzip the bag with fear and loathing in my heart:  out comes a canister of deodorant, glopped heavily with blue grit; so, too, my shampoo, wearing an obscene outer fluoridated sheath; and, my razor … alas! … how can those four magnificent turbo-blades slice after such an ordeal?  No, no, they cannot; and later each evening, just before the concert, I work these microengineered blades roughly over my cheeks, watch my blood pour out in torrents …

But toothpaste sins worst at home.  You place the tube at long last upon the white pure porcelain of your sink, you revel in being home, you go out for coffee and live your life, as if nothing is wrong, as if love were your oyster, and you come back to find that the innocent, supposedly inanimate object has somehow found a soul, and the purpose of that soul is expressed through a great sigh—an expiration!—a thick blue lake of Crest Pro-Health has spread upon the whiteness of your recently cleaned sink, a blotch of wasted, cleansing sorrow, and the scariest part is you have no idea why.   Why?    Why?  This tubal sigh is so profound, so inevitable, so ineffable.  I find myself wondering, in my spare hours, what the musical parallel might be:  perhaps the austere entrance of the quartet in Chausson’s Concert, 3rd movement:


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… (which I played last week)?  A simple, tragic sigh, an all at once release.  OR it might sound more prismatic, sensual, like the first measure of Brahms Op. 119, #1:


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Or perhaps it is more like the entire last movement of Mahler’s 9th symphony, a tube crammed with Weltschmerz, with regret for teeth once brushed, capped and loved?  There is no way of solving these primal Colgate conundrums.  And, this problem is not mine alone.  Josh and Josh’s assistant have been wrestling with the selfsame paradox!  In fact, H has been dutifully and mythically cleaning and re-cleaning Josh’s toiletry bag every day, much like Penelope weaving and unweaving something in some famous Greek poem or other.  But I have no H.

Josh is working on a top secret invention which should solve this problem once and for all.

Meanwhile, I labor on, fighting the blue tide, making music against all odds, while toothpaste oozes all around me.   Maybe the presenters realize I am squeezed, when I grump at them.  No really I’m a puppydog, I’m a nice guy!  And maybe they hear me practice, over and over, before the concerts, the same old passage in the Brahms D minor Violin Sonata, a piece I once imagined I would never have to practice again, because I “knew it so well.”   (What an idiot).  I practice the second theme … isn’t it always the second theme? always coming back to haunt you, like an ex-lover?   Maybe I remember from the old days of being coached relentlessly at Oberlin, some teacher saying I should breathe out before I begin … because now, every night that I perform it, I breathe out just before that strange syncopated sad legato, in order to ease myself into its stream, one toe at a time, in medias res.  But I prepare very differently for the second theme!  If the opening theme seems to be an expiring, squeezed-out thing, dying out in one sigh after another, leaving its remnants cast off, the second theme, well …

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Maybe no audio clip can capture this theme’s magic.  But for me, it is amazing; I become full, round, I love again; some deep well in myself is refilled, some bittersweet reservoir.  What you have cast off (first theme), you still love (second theme); it swells again with all the futile, beautiful hopes, and you drink Brahmsian bliss.

Can you brush your teeth with it?

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Steven Isserlis has turned 50! And happily I flew to London to play on his birthday gala concert, with performers Andras Schiff, Radu Lupu, Dame Felicity Lott, Mark Padmore, Joshua Bell and yours truly.

Now, in the official accounts of this concert, I think it is fair to say, my name does not take a particularly prominent place. Since the newspapers perversely seemed to focus on these totally no-name pianists who I guess were also on the program, I thought I might offer a bit of a foil, or a counterpoint … the concert from my point of view, from out the Denkish eye, if you will: a kind of “live blog” perverted into a “post mortem.” And so, with some regrets, I offer:

12:52. Arrive Paddington Station. Check into hotel.

1:23-1:30. Purchase most absurdly British sandwich I can find at Marks & Spencer: Cornish gammon crunchers with Persnickety Cheddar and Wiltshire Bits and Bramley-Oxford-Hobnob Recycled Apple Chutney, extra Cress. Get text from Josh saying he’ll arrive at 5 pm and to be sure to be early. Set alarm and climb into bed.

3:32. Tormented by dreams of insane sandwiches. No, Jeremy, sleep.

3:34. I dream that I wake up too late, and thus ruin the Wigmore rehearsal schedule. Andras Schiff, Radu Lupu, and Josh are all yelling at me in a circle. I am twelve years old and I smell peanut butter. Meanwhile, Steven Isserlis from some mysterious undisclosed location, like the voice of God, is accusing me of never replying to his emails. I wake up, trembling, and discern my hotel clock blinking blue in the darkness: ah yes, everything’s fine, there is plenty of time, I am not twelve, I do not want to play Dungeons & Dragons. With that jetlaggy, clawing feeling where sleep (that siren) is calling to you, pulling at you, singing to you a song of nothingness, telling you there is nothing better than sleep, nothing in the whole world …

3:43. I dream that I wake up too late … etcetera …

3:48. I stuff all the coffee packets into the hotel coffee maker. I wish to break absolutely every rule regarding jetlag. Nap in afternoon, check; huge amounts of caffeine and mild overeating, also check. I also drink a minimum of water.

5:00. Arrive at Wigmore with steamed, steaming clothes. No one is on stage. I play the piano for a dreamy while, orgiastically absorbing the sound of that most beautiful of concert halls. I imagine I am Edwin Fischer and I play Bach; then I imagine I am Johnny Depp and I am a pirate.

5:31. Josh arrives.

5:32. It becomes clear I shall have to sit on a bench calibrated either for Radu Lupu or Andras Schiff. RL’s is extremely low, which is exciting and exotic, as if the piano were a distant, mountainous island on which you rested your hands. But AS’s height feels safer. I become slightly neurotic about this–there is always something wonderful to become neurotic about just before a concert! The lovely staff of the Wigmore offer me more coffee, which I accept.

6:16. Josh and I purchase chicken & bacon sandwiches from the Wigmore cafe. Exactly how many pork products with mayonnaise can I fit into this one day? Only time will tell. This sandwich is heavily piled with scallion, which Josh and I discover, but alas!, too late … my breath will reek of scallion all night long.

6:42. Scallion-related stomach issues. I decide to go out and seek another sandwich to settle the effects of the last one.

6:50. The sandwiches aren’t wacky enough. I get a coffee instead. I laugh at jetlag.

7:35. Enjoying Italian Concerto, immensely. Sudden desire to go practice Bach for 988 hours. It is not good to listen to AS or RL just before you have to go on stage, not good at all. Inspiration and intimidation are at war within my heaving, caffeinated bosom. Do I even have a bosom?

8:22. RL is able to play–pretty well, actually!–from his super-low bench. I become neurotic again about the height of my own bench, and flee the hall.

9:10. Josh and I are both handed a bottle of champagne; that means we are done playing, I think. I burp scallion at Dame Felicity Lott while telling her how much I love her recording of Suleika I.  My bench was too low, still. When do we get to eat again?

9:49. Getting into the Scherzo of the F minor Fantasy. It’s funny: when you’re playing them, you never realize how long these Schubert scherzi truly are.

10:12. Spectacularly beautiful rendering of Schubert A major Rondo. I go backstage and wander about. It is a zoo, a cocktail of craziness and schmooziness. I tell Andras Schiff how much I enjoyed his Bach, and he says … get this … “I enjoyed your Sarah Palin blog.”

There was a magnificent Hungarian emphasis on the word blog, and his eyes widened a bit, as if he were surprised to find himself saying that word. I consider this to be the existential climax of the whole, strange evening, I’m speechless, I have no idea how to react to the idea that Andras Schiff read the Sarah Palin blog, and my life may never be the same. Is there a world where Andras Schiff says the word “blog”? There is, and we’re living in it.

11:32. Excellent wines and company at star-studded post-concert dinner. A late-night four-course meal with red wine: the perfectly, eloquently, triumphantly worst thing imaginable to do for my jetlag.

And furthermore, I note with satisfaction that the guest I have brought is getting drunk, even verging on belligerent. A scandal of course could be either excellent or terrible publicity, I muse semi-cynically; I am in fate’s hands.

4:02 AM. Is it legal to open champagne on a London city bus? (The answer is no.)

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Good For You

The night before Thanksgiving, I walked into the no-frills liquor store.  Maybe you know it; it sits near 88th and Broadway and lends its merchandise no illusion of glamour, its patrons no solace of disguise.  Rows of bottles climb up utility shelves to a dismal ceiling, and every last dust particle adhering to every last bargain Chianti is visible in the remorseless fluorescent gleam.  Aesthetically, it is so much closer to a hardware store than a wine shop, and if you really must know, the point of all this verbose pseudo-Dickensian scene-setting is that I was quite surprised, while pondering a Wine Spectator blurb, to hear the strains of Rachmaninoff’s Suite for Two Pianos.

I tried to concentrate on selecting a wine to bring to the Thanksgiving Feast.  It was impossible.  The two pianists on the radio had become implacable demons in the back of my head, and the wine blurbs blurred into a haze of chocolate-currant overtones and melodies with far-too-obvious orgasms.  Just as I was asking myself, in manufactured outrage, how Rachmaninoff in his earnestness could manage to screw up even the orgasm (musically speaking), the shop owner walked in the door, and said to the guy at the counter …

“What?  Ya got the opera on now?”

His tone was wry, mocking, redolent of rye breads in Long Island diners on desperate Saturday afternoons.  Especially—may I add?—the word “opera” amid his sentence came in for particular opprobrium, a kind of harsh bridge-and-tunnel emphasis, as if it were a sour chunk of verbiage amid the fruit salad of his thought, or a flat tire on the Garden State Parkway.  I tuned my ears reluctantly back to the radio, to make sure I had not misheard … but no … no voices were to be distinguished:  just the two pounding pianists, and the ongoing, repetitive search of Rachmaninoff for something profound to say.

There was a 30-ish fellow standing at the cash register (Yankees cap, sweatpants) and he shrugged.  He could not explain the opera on the radio.  I looked back at the owner, whom I now regarded as a sort of genius.  How on Earth did he manage to identify it as “opera,” despite the complete lack of the human voice?

“Well, it’s good for ya, good for the brain,” the owner said.
“Yeah, well, too late for me,” said cash register.
“You can’t hear anything any more?”
“Nah, my brain’s burned out, since college.”
“So why you listening to this?”
“Hell if I know.”

Alright, I said to myself, I’m outta here.  I didn’t know why I was listening to all this, either.  It was as depressing as an empty can of generic cranberry sauce.  I smacked my wines in front of the cash register—who knows what wines they were at this point—and paid and fled.

But of course as I walked home up Broadway, I couldn’t help digesting what I’d heard.  If you start from the premise:

Classical music equals opera.

And you add the further supposition:

Opera/classical is a mental vitamin; it is “good for you.”  (It is useless if you drank too much in college?)

It seemed to me fairly clear the next logical deduction was:

Classical music is broccoli.

Yes, baby, yes. The Broccolization of Classical Music had been going on for some time, I suddenly realized in retroactive historical insight which certainly deserves the next MacArthur Genius Grant.  You might say classical music is often over-esteemed; and broccoli is almost always over-steamed!   Its leafy tops tend to soak up a lot of liquid—in the same way that Classical Music seems to soak up a lot of tradition!  I rest my case.  If only we had known a bit earlier, we could have stopped this rampant Broccolization, or slowed it, with public service announcements, a cooperative effort between the ASOL and the Broccoli Council.

All this thought of soggy stalks made me crave sharp pixels.  When I got home, I turned my TV to its most reliable HD channel:  PBS.  And there, of course, was André Rieu.  (André on PBS is as ubiquitous as Huang Ruo press releases in my email inbox.)  Oh, André!  I watched for a little while, sank into vegetal despair, and realized another great law, to set beside the last:

1)  Classical Music is Opera is Broccoli in the Eyes of the World.
2)  André Rieu is the Absolute Zero of Cool.

I don’t presume to say that I am any great cool cat.

I have been, on lengthy occasions, as great a nerd as anyone should ever be.

But I propose that these André Rieu telecasts, complete with phone banks and PBS pledge drive emcees, are the least cool thing ever created.  I mean, look at those ornate, gold-coated music stands, and the campy, pillowy outfits; look at his hair, for God’s sake (then look away, or you will go blind); watch the camera pan over some woman’s eyes as she leans on her boyfriend’s shoulder, brimming with tears at a saccharine arrangement of “Memories;” look at the fonts, etcetera, etcetera!  Drink it in, the complete absence of cool.  Swim in this black hole of hip.

And the painful thing for me, of course, watching all this, my eyes thrown back in bewilderment, is knowing that I am attached to André in some way.  He and I are plying the same trade.  In the eyes of much of the world, we are both broccoli.  I reached out, mentally, to my broccoli brother, I sent out leafy tendrils of tender embrace, before recoiling in horror.  My mental state at this point could possibly be represented by the following chart:rieubroccolichart.jpg… which is the stuff of nightmares.  My kinship with André tormented me; I found these thoughts eerily echoed at a comedic website entitled Deadbeat:

…Who is [Andre Rieu]?  Who isn’t Andre Rieu? Me, I hear you saying, I’m quite sure I’m not Andre Rieu. But how sure are you?

Not as sure as I’d like to be!  Culinarily, the André solution to Broccolization is to dump cheese on the broccoli.  Now, as you put more cheese on broccoli, the more delicious it becomes, but simultaneously, and proportionally, the less cool it becomes.  (The closer it gets to Peoria and the farther from the olive oil coasts.)  If I may merge culinary and calculus terminologies, I believe André represents the absolute limit of broccoli as cheese approaches infinity.  It is not possible to get cheesier than him, as it is not possible to go faster than the speed of light.  I believe this formulation deserves yet another MacArthur Genius Grant (is it possible to get two?).  But why do I find this limit so appalling, when people in the audience seem so happy and musically enthused?  I want music to be good but not “good for you,” I want music to be fun but not frivolous, I want total emotional involvement but maybe not too much, I want music to joke without demeaning itself or others, I want the concert to be serious but not Serious, I want people to want to suffer, oh who knows what I want, I want it all, I want classical music to go beyond broccoli, to Japanese eggplant, or sesame leaf, hell, the whole produce section, preferably prewashed and prepped by some patient sous chef of the soul, and ready for delectable consumption, and clearly, judging from the length of this post, I will do anything to avoid all the practicing I really really really should be doing.

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An Interview with Sarah Palin

JD:  Governor, may I call you Sarah?

SP:  You betcha.

JD:  I just simply can’t believe in the midst of this intense campaign season, you could find the time to talk with me about the “Hammerklavier” Sonata.

SP:  Well, ya know, Beethoven was the dude who said thanks but no thanks to Napoleon.  Plus from all the mavericky songs he wrote, maybe this one could be known as the most maverickyest.

JD:  I have to confess I’m a bit surprised you are so familiar with this particular work.

SP:  Well, Mr. Snooty Juilliard Graduate, I’ll have you know I did my thesis on the Hammerklavier at Hawaiian Pacific University.  Of course I had to continue revising it at Northern Idaho Massage Institute.  And at Montana College for Bear-Loving Beauty Pageant Alumni.  But also too the Hammerklavier’s on my ‘Pod whenever I go wolf hunting … those dactyls get me SUPER pumped.

JD:  What was your thesis called?

SP:  Originally I wanted to call it “Frickin Kick-Ass Beethoven,” but my advisor was in a bad mood that day because Felicity chose Noel over Ben.  So I had to change it to “Trickle-Down Fugonomics:  A Reaganian Model of Beethoven’s Counterpoint.”   That’s how I got funding from the American Enterprise Institute.

JD:  What was the main thrust of your thesis?

SP:  Jeremy, I guess my point is, a fugue is more than one voice, just like America.  And it has certain values.

JD:  Please elaborate …

SP:  Well, you know Jeremy, we’re overtaxed.  And Beethoven says, well, goshdarnit, just try and govern that fugue subject.  Cause he knows that government is really the problem, and the scariest two words in the English language are “Schenkerian Analysis.”

JD:  So you don’t think a Schenkerian 3-line governs the unfolding of the Hammerklavier?

SP:  Let’s put it this way, Jeremy.  And I know your type has a hard time getting past the filter, so let me unfilter you right here and now.  Nobody, but no one, can do better than the free enterprise of the notes left to themselves.  And Beethoven himself, look right here, says “fugue in 3 voices, with some license.”  And also too license is just another word for maverick and and maverick is another word for freedom and freedom is just another word for America and no Austrian analyst tells America what to do.

JD:  Word!  Explain to me this trickle-down theory.

SP:  The “Hammerklavier” is the perfect instance of my example, Jeremy.  Ever notice how the piece is full of chains of thirds?

JD:  Sure, Sarah.  It is well noted in Charles Rosen’s The Classical Style, and many other sources.

SP:  Well, ask yourself another question:  do they ever go up?

JD:  Hmm.  Well, I guess not.

SP:  Booyah!   As my grandma used to say, you can’t bag a moose with a spoon.

JD:  Ok, l think I see where you’re going with that.  Tell me a bit about the harmonic language of the work.

SP:  It’s great to see Beethoven being so pro-B-flat major.

JD:  I guess I would have said it’s “in” B-flat major, not “pro-” B-flat major?  …

SP:  Oh, Jeremy, I wouldn’t expect a naive Upper West Side nacho-eating liberal like yourself to understand that every key is, in fact, a war against every other key.  And you know unless we defend B-flat major one day we’ll wake up and there won’t be a B-flat major.  Two flats come at a price, eternal vigilance, or I guess what I’m sayin’ is, these flats don’t run.

JD:  But Sarah—to play devil’s advocate here—you could make that one of the defining, most beautiful elements of the piece is the presence of sort of “radical” notes, notes that don’t really belong in B-flat major, strange other notes, neither major nor minor …

SP:  All that sounds really good on paper, Jeremy, at your Ivy League coffeeshops and so forth, but out here in the real world where I’m sitting there’s plenty of common sense telling me that wrong notes are wrong notes.  There was a great piece on Lou Dobbs the other day about this, called “Why Is G-Flat Getting My Tax Dollars?”

JD:  I didn’t know he was a Beethoven scholar.

SP:  There’s Walmarts and Walmarts of stuff out there you don’t know.  I agree with Lou, we can put up with these immigrant notes, but only if they enter the key legally, through the proper channels, and for heck’s sake let’s not get in the business of givin’ ‘em driving licenses.  They should pull themselves up by their own bootstraps.

JD:  I’m not sure how that applies to Beethoven … ?

SP:  Just cause Beethoven can wigglewaggle his way into all sorts of keys doesn’t mean we have to give them amnesty.  Next question.

JD:  Tell me your thoughts about the slow movement.

SP:  [pause]   In what respect, Jeremy?

JD:  The third movement:  how would you describe it?

SP:  [pause]  I gotta confess, I usually fast forward through that one … It’s kind of a bummer.  And since unlike some Americans out there I don’t hate America, I don’t want to dwell on all those negativity.

JD:  But some people might make the case that the third movement is kind of the emotional core of the work … ?

SP:  Ya know, I feel pretty strongly that a composer is a lot like a musicologist, except that he has actual notes to put down on paper.  [Applause]

JD:  Sarah, you didn’t really answer my question …

SP:  I got some questions for you.  For example, why does Beethoven decide to kick fugal butt at the end of this song?  What’s the point?  I think another interesting question is why in fact is this piece in B-flat major?  I mean didn’t he already write the “Archduke” Trio, which is ALSO in B-flat major?  Why couldn’t he just write the “Archduke” trio again?  I know a lotta folks out there, in Main Street all across this land of ours, they’ll tell you, they’re just more “Archduke” kinda folks then they are “Hammerklavier” folks.  And that’s fine.  That’s why America is so great.  I would never take away their right to bear “Archduke.”  And its true the “Archduke” is a lot more Budweiser to those folks the “Hammerklavier” seems like some sort of weird imported wheat beer or somethin’, but my point is, it’s like Beethoven sat down to write the “Archduke” but then as his pen or quill or chalk or whatever hit the paper it took a kind of wrong turn, God bless him …

JD:  A wrong turn?

SP:  Well, I don’t mean wrong in a bad way, but in a weird way.  I think the best way to explain it is it’s like that movie with the guy, you know, who turns into a fly.  It’s like there’s the “Archduke” trio and all that good noble normal Beethoven stuff, but then it gets fused with some alien DNA and so, like instead of a normal scherzo you get this little strange runt of a crazy scherzo and then in place of a really long slow movement you get an even longer slow movement and everything just spirals out of control, like some sort of crazy Bach futuristic Beethoven hybrid thingamabob.

JD:  That’s actually not totally uninsightful, Sarah.  I’m sorry I liberally condescended to you.  It’s true everything in the slow movement of the “Hammerklavier” speaks in exaggerated or caricatured ways.  When you compare it to the symmetrical arches of the “Archduke” slow movement the “Hammerklavier” has a tendency to get stuck, to wander or obsess, as if Beethoven were commenting on the very nature of musical narrative itself, as if he were questioning the foundations of phraseology …  Whereas the “Archduke” seems the very summit of phraseology, a kind of Mount Olympus.

SP:  Yeah, whatever.

JD:  Sarah, what’s your favorite part of the “Hammerklavier”?

SP:  Well that’s really hard to say, but I think I gotta go with the opening of the last movement.

JD:  The Largo introduction?  Mine too!  Maybe we have more in common than we thought!

SP:  Yah, I really love how those chords just kind of sit there waiting for something to do …  and then something will happen … and then we’ll be waiting again … lotsa suspense and mystery you know … it’s sort of a transition with no clear or obvious goal … how do I put this …

JD:  Kind of a bridge to nowhere?

SP:  Smart ass.
JD:  Sarah, the last movement is one of the most famously difficult things in all the piano repertoire.  Do you have any advice for this American pianist about this movement before he performs this work on tour?

SP:  You don’t want to hear my advice.

JD:  Oh come on let me have it.

SP:  I think it’s pretty obvious.

JD:  I’m dying to know.

SP:   You’re not gonna like it.

JD:  Please …

SP:  Trill, baby, trill!

JD:   [sinks head in hands]  The interview is over.

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