Twelve Tone Deafness
Last night The Fabulous Wife and I paid another visit on Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony. In addition to Beethoven’s Leonore Overture № 3 (crisply performed) and Richard Strauss’s first-rate second-rate tone poem Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks (ditto), they played two piano concertos: Mozart’s Piano Concert № 14 and Arnold Schoenberg’s one-and-only work in that format.
The pianist for both was roly-poly 69 year-old Emanuel Ax, a native of Lviv, Ukraine. (Hiya landsman!) Both pieces recall Vienna, but the Mozart dates from 1784, and the Schoenberg, written in Los Angeles rather than Vienna (which the prescient Schoenberg