May 1, 2009

Behind the Microphone

This afternoon, I had the pleasure of taking our guest pianist Pascal Rogé over to WXXI to be on Julia Figueras' Backstage Pass. It was great to hear him playing works by Satie and Debussy, as well as by a Japanese composer named Yoshimatsu who I hadn't heard before. He said that while Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms were gods, Poulenc, Satie and Debussy are like friends, and he's more comfortable hanging out with his friends (well, they are all French too, which helps).

It was interesting to learn that he loves new technology - he said it makes it easier to communicate with his family on his iPhone, and in fact texted his wife before the interview to give her the link to listen online. I was also thrilled to have a chance to use my French (it was my major in college) - not that it was necessary since he's fluent in English.

Plus, he was a really nice guy - very easy to talk with and interested in lots of different things - travel, photography, theater, cars, food (all my interests as well). When he travels he's always looking to sample the local foods and make connections with people, and he had a good story about visiting a restaurant on a recent trip to China.

To listen to the interview portion of the show, visit the WXXI web site by clicking here.

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