Monday, July 28, 2008

Paul Jacobs at Philadelphia's Verizon Hall

I have been waiting for this for almost a year and a half. If I had been paying better attention, it would have come sooner, but it was only today that I discovered that the recording of Paul Jacobs' splendid concert at Philadelphia's Verizon Hall had been broadcast on Pipedreams and is now available to hear online.

In this performance, Jacobs, who is professor of organ at the renowned Juilliard School in Manhattan, takes on some of the biggest war horses of the organ repertoire. He brings to these pieces an originality of interpretation which sheds new light on them in sometimes surprising ways. Several of these are not what the purist would call "authentic" performances, a preposterous term to be sure. Those who take objection to this should keep in mind that "authenticity" itself is not authentic. Historicism is not historical, etc.

At any rate, everyone who makes the effort to attend concerts knows that there are many great concerts, and then there are those few which stick with you for a long time. This recital of Jacobs belongs in the latter category, so take the 90 minutes to listen to this, and reap the rewards.

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