Gary Lemco reviews a CD by Martha Argerich of live performances in 2007.
These live performances from the 2007 Verbier Festival (27 July) exist as a direct result of Martin Tison Engstroem’s invitation to Martha Argerich – whom the Founder and Director of the Festival had known since 1969 – for her to collaborate with her musician friends, preferably youthful, to make music in whatever repertory they chose. Argerich, who predominantly invests her energies into chamber music, does appear solo in the Schumann Kinderszenen suite. Her rendition of the Schumann preserves its precious intimacy, touched by her sense of rubato and dramatic poise. For fleetness of fingers, her Hasche-Mann serves as a demonstration and a challenge. The Schumann capacity for maerchen, fairy-tale march narratives, is well served in Wichtige Begebenheit. The Argerich Traeumerei seems intent to rival Horowitz for lingering atmosphere. By the suite’s end, we feel Schumann, having “spoken” his infinite nostalgia, has found a true votary in Argerich.