French pianist Jean-Efflam Bavouzet is on tour in Australia in November 2014. He has performed with many of the world’s top orchestras and conductors including Boulez, Gergiev, Petrenko, Kent Nagano and Neeme Järvi and given recitals in major concert halls worldwide.
Q & A
Q: As a child, what did you want to be?
JB: I wanted to be an architect, a fencing champion or a rock drummer!
Q: What is your earliest musical memory?
JB: My earliest musical memory … my mother playing Brahms Intermezzo. Bernstein conducting Mahler 8th in Vienna and a concert with the Percussion Ensemble of Strasbourg (appealed to my rock drummer aspirations).
Q: What was your ‘first’ instrument?
JB: Piano, Percussion, Oboe, Synthesiser.
Q: What is your favourite composers/works
JB: … not enough space! Among 1000 others : Haydn, Schumann, Stravinsky, Mantovani, Debussy, Beethoven, Widmann, Pierné, Bartòk, Magnard, Liszt …
Q: How about interesting conductors?
JB: … Solti. Kleiber. Bernstein.
Q: If you could have three living/dead people to dinner who would you have and … most important who will cook?
JB: We French love our food -I suggest Mantovani cooks. Liszt brings the wines and Debussy the dessert.
Q: What about your favourite books?
JB: … Rushdie: Shalimar the Clown; Mann: Doctor Faustus; Flaubert: Salambô
Q: Can you recall an amusing on-stage moment?
JB: Recent US tour performing at Carnegie Hall. I broke a string performing Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the London Philharmonic and shortly thereafter the conductor Vladimir Jurowski almost fell off the podium… somehow we managed !
Q: Other interests?
JB: … miniature electric trains, Z scale 220 times smaller than reality. Tracks are 6.5 mm wide. The smallest locomotive is 4.5 cm long.
Jean-Efflam Bavouzet performs in Brisbane as part of the Medici series on Sunday 9 November, 3pm at the Conservatorium Theatre, Southbank. Buy tickets here
He also performs in Sydney as part of the Sydney Symphony International Pianists in Recital series on Monday 17 November, 7pm at City Recital Hall, Angel Place. Buy tickets here
Sonata in E flat, Op.81 (Les Adieux)
Sonata in F, Op.54
Sonata in F minor, Op.57 (Appassionata)
B MANTOVANI The Book of JEB [Australian Premiere]