Blog #75. Amsterdam

October 11 2015

It was an amazing day and a very special evening. The day before our concerts on 8th and 9th of October with maestro Jansons and Bavarian Radio Orchestra, which will be recorded on DVD and broadcast live on Medici.TV, Rodion Shchedrin invited us to dinner. I wish I could convey my sentiments, I feel during our conversation with these legendary people. For the first time I came here in 2004, during that visit I recorded Fifth Concerto by Shchedrin with Bavarian Radio Orchestra and Mariss Janons. Orchestra is one of top 5 in the world in quality, emotions and perfectionism to my mind. And today, 11 years later I am here again with Mariss Jansons and Rodion Shchedrin on the eve of season opening for Bavarian Radio Orchestra.

It seems like I am in XIX century atmosphere. I try to capture and remember every moment, every word of our conversation. Mariss Jansons and Rodion Shchedrin are old friends. They have very original credo: evening was full of their inimitable humor. We even started a contest of anecdotes, but I cannot say who won, everybody was brilliant. It is funny, that every time we meet, we ask each other: “What’s new? New anecdotes?” And this evening was not an exception.

I was lucky to hear unique recollections about Lilya Brik, who was a close friend of Shchedrin and Plisetskaya, about Prokofiev, Shostakovich, etc. After that we dined at Literary Café, which is situated not far away from Shchedrin’s apartment. And he invited us to his home, where he lived with Maya Mikhailovna and lives now alone. This couple was a beautiful example of wisdom, grace, kindness and refinement. I saw the piano, photos of Maya Plisetskaya, and a memorial candle in front of one of photos. It is impossible to say what you feel when you see this pain of loss and parting with the special one. I still feel cold emptiness inside after that visit to their home. Rodion Konstantinovich obviously feels keenly his loss. But he tries to live on, compose music and not to despair. So I wish him fortitude and good health.

Despite an accountable note of sadness and regret about inopportuneness of such great people like Maya Mikhailovna death, our meeting with Mariss Jansons and Rodion Shchedrin was lively and life-asserting. Because there are emotions and recollections, that live for all eternity. There are people, who will support you and give hope, that everything will be great in the end. And Maya Mikhailovna will stay with us forever. Ave, Maya!

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