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Khatia Buniatishvili: Blazing Piano Goddess Reveals Her Secrets

By Thomas Swan t.swan@classicalite.com on Mar 19, 2016 09:42 PM EDT

Get Khatia Buniatishvili behind a piano and a change occurs. Maybe, not so much a change as opposed to a possession occurs. Sitting at the piano and those keys staring back at her, the soul of everyone who came before her conjures themselves and channel the emotions of the moment. The feeling and the intensity you can witness in Ms. Buniatishvili's face. It is sensual, alarming, hallowing. And Khatia, the Georgian goddess and her blazing piano make you feel every moment. They conjure up the colors of emotion and life.

But this style, her style, is not for everyone. Khatia is the first to admit this. In an interview with TimeOutHongKong on line, Ms. Buniatishvili had this to say, "I would say that music and arts are subjective. There is no general truth but only personal [truth] in the arts. And the only truth that matters to me is my truth as I have to be sincere to composer, public and myself."

Yet, the traditionalists hold a tight grip on the world of classical music, almiost a stranglehold. Then again this is hardly anything new, is it? What will surely further infuriate the critics is that Khatia holds own allegiances to her piano and her music. Genres are meaningless. They are simply slipstreams that transport you to your next destination. Khatia expounds from the same interview, " I can imagine working with someone that I find interesting; the genre doesn't have an importance. Music doesn't have borders."

The critic's opinion is shaped in a box and limited to those dimensions. It is based on a life of self awareness, confined by the limits of quotation. Says Scott Cantrell of the Dallas News of a performance Ms. Buniatishvili gave in Texas, "But Buniatishvili, who performed in a glittery, bright-red dress, was all about self-indulgence. Sometimes grotesquely distorted, this was music reflected in the aural equivalent of funhouse mirrors. One could only guess that the standing ovations, whoops and bravas came from people not well acquainted with the pieces."

Do you do music any greater injustice to strangle the life's blood from it? Where does failure begin? Is music to be ruled by the rational? Why then does it move us? Make us run faster, jump higher, nod our heads? Self indulgent.

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TagsKhatia Buniatishvili, piano, Interview, Playing Style

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