In musical art there are compositions, authors, performers, whose act of creating an artwork is difficult to translate into words. It seems that it takes a certain time to fully comprehend the silence, which is an integral part of the interpretation of what we have heard, seen, experienced. And if we succeed and we call it by the real name, as said by our greatest writer Ivo Andric, then we have accomplished the most that a mortal man can achieve.
Listening to the concert of the pianist Eugen Indjic, who is according to all odds one of the greatest living interpreters of Frederik Chopin’s work, it was precisely this ‘phenomenon of silence’ after the concert that was necessary for us to translate his art of playing into words. In the crowded Hall of the First Kragujevac Gymnasium, with an intimate atmosphere and a general impression of immense modesty, extraordinary technical possibilities and strong internal charge, pianist Eugen Indjic conveyed to us a sense of authentic sincerity, love for music and passionate enthusiasm for his call.
Chopin’s four Mazurkas from opus 30 (C minor, B minor, D-flat major, C-sharp minor) inspired by Polish folklore, in the interpretation of the pianist, exuded with passion and emotional dilemma, with unexplainable ease of music and consciously enhanced relationships within them. The feeling of the temperance necessary for the pianists in the interpretation of Chopin’s works, so that there is no strain into severe pathetic, was especially present in the following composition that was on the program – Ballade Op. 23 in G minor. The basic motive that comes out of this piece is the feeling of fear. Although it is difficult to define it and compare it with any negative state of the human soul, in the interpretation of Eugen Indjic it gets a new perspective that approaches this “epopee without words” to its opposite – the bliss. After a poised transition with two other Chopin’s Mazurkas (Op. 24 No. 4 in B minor and Op. 59 No. 3 in F-sharp minor), to appraised by many as the “ballad of ballades”, Op. 52 in F minor, we reached the end of the first part of the concert. This composition full of emotional charge with prosaic mixing of Faustian and gentle impressions, and without excessive pessimism, was interpreted above all poetically. Leaving the impression of resigned melancholy, the pianist managed to translate to us his own feelings of what is hidden in the very depths of his soul.
After a short break, at which the audience was able to gather impressions from the first part of the concert, we had the opportunity to hear one of the best Schumann’s works for the piano – Kreisleriana Op. 16. The composition consists of eight movements inspired by a special conductor Kreisler, a literary hero which was created by one of the most famous romantic writers E. T. A. Hoffmann. With the Beethovenian expression, and although in its core simple but disturbing, this series of unusual fantasies, in the interpretation of Eugen Indjic, get a special power by being played extremely prudently. And it seems without that specified impulsive perception of this piece, which you certainly could not even expect when you have such a refined and noble temperament on the stage. Chopin’s Scherzo Op. 31 No. 2 in B minor, was the last composition at program. Although it carries a specific expression of opposing emotions, it surely represents the most luminous one of the four that composer wrote. What definitely enhanced the interpretation of this Chopin’s work is a refined emotional charge and complete concentration of performer, which was quite necessary after such an inspirational concert.
Two compositions were performed at encore – Debussy’s last prelude (Fireworks) from the Book II of his 24 preludes, and Chopin’s Mazurka Op. 63 No. 3 in C-sharp minor. The crowd applauded with thunderous applause, and at the end with the standing ovations, visibly showing their excitement about the concert. And how not to, when we had a rare opportunity to meet with the artist of the world renown, who with his unique temperament and humbleness, managed to transmit to us the energy and musicality that derived out of the utmost depth of his soul.
Author: Katarina Lazarevic Sretenovic
Translation: Ljubica Guzvic
Photo: Milos Dasic