The Columbus Indiana Philharmonic’s 2009-2010 season is titled “Who’s on First?” At least for the opening concert on September 19th there’s an answer. “Wu’s on First.” Pianist Di Wu returns to join David Bowden and the orchestra for Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1.
“David actually asked me if I would play the Chopin a year ago,” said Wu. “I had never played it before, but David seems to enjoy asking me to explore new things. It seemed as if I had plenty of time, but then I decided to play in the VanCliburn competition and things got busy.”
George Walker mentioned that he’d heard that the Scots guitarist David Russell learns pieces backwards. “Oh, “ said Wu. “I couldn’t imagine doing it that way. I just start and work on it they way I always do. “ Walker asked if there is a regular procedure. “Well, I really play through it to get the piece under my fingers. There will be parts that are pretty easy and some that are harder. So those are the ones that I’ll work on the most.”
Walker went on to ask about the pianist’s concern for the orchestra. “Yes, I have to study and learn what they are doing as well. Sometimes they’re accompanying me and sometimes I’m even accompanying them, so I have to know both parts for the kind of cooperative performance that I really believe in.”
It seemed logical, so Walker asked if she was considering doing some of the conducting from the keyboard that pianists seem to do especially in works from the classical period. “No, I haven’t really thought about that, but in the future, who knows!”
In addition to the Chopin, the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic will play Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4. Artistic Director David Bowden will conduct.
September 19, 2009 at 7:30
Erne Auditorium of Columbus North High School