The Fraser Performance Studio at 99.5 All Classical is the site of countless gorgeous, powerful, transcendent performances, but it's hard to think of a time when there was more laughter than when Igudesman and Joo visited this week.
Based in Vienna, the British-Korean pianist and Russian violinist arrived for their Boston debut late in the afternoon. An audience was set to arrive just before 8:00 p.m, and as the duo settled in, sound engineer Antonio Oliart worked with producer Alan McLellan and host Cathy Fuller to finalize the details of the show. Along the way, Hyung-ki Joo tried out the Hamburg Steinway Model D. Not sure if he was pleased, or maybe just getting into character...
Fortunately, his opinion seemed to change once he was joined by his partner-in-crime, Aleksey Igudesman.
And they really got down to business when Aleksey began working on, well, "extended technique."
But unbeknownst to those in the studio, quite a scene was developing outside, in the hallway and lobby of WGBH's headquarters.
Aleksey enjoyed just a few more minutes of calm before the storm ...
... which came when the crowd stormed the hall (actually, they were much more polite than that).
Cathy got things started ...
Once introduced, the duo began with a lovely piece by ... Mozart.
Until, well ...
Once signals got straightened out, true "emotion" was allowed to emerge.
By this time the audience was in stitches, and Cathy did her best to keep things under control. The rest of the program included a collision of the sacred and the profane in the form of Bach and Piazzolla (no exaggeration: a collision), as well as an exploration of the long-term dreams of each of the players (hint: The Simpsons).
After the radio program ended, the duo came back for a fun few minutes of questions.
The crowd left happy, and Igudesman and Joo ... left.
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