Rubinstein's 120th Birthday
Sponsored by the Jerusalem Music Center,
The Rubinstein Music Society and Tsfunot
The good old Jewish blessing "Until 120" can no longer be addressed to pianist Arthur Rubinstein who passed away at the age of 95. Nevertheless, his 120th birthday was celebrated by a commemorative concert entitled "Homage to Arthur Rubinstein".
As soloist, the event appropriately featured Ukrainian pianist Alexander Gavrylyuk (22), winner of the Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Competition 2005 in Israel. He displayed an exquisite, ingratiating soft touch in Intermezzi and Rhapsodies by Brahms, and warm-blooded yet tastefully controlled animated expression with brilliant virtuosity in Etudes by Chopin. In Dvorak's Piano Quintet, with the Ariel Quartet (Sasha Kazovsky, Gershon Gerchikov, Sergey Tarachanski, Amit Even-Tov) he discreetly took the lead without assuming a too obviously dominating solo role. The players' fine balance and excellent coordination was a noteworthy artistic achievement, considering that they had no more than two rehearsals together.
The music was preceded by documentary video selections that showed Rubinstein in an animated, good-humored conversation with Teddy Kollek, then mayor of Jerusalem, and at a master class he gave at the Jerusalem Music Centre. His intensely concentrated face expression during a young students' playing could well illustrate his "Art of Listening". This term was coined by pianist Arieh Vardi, in his role as M. C. in a short interview with Lady Anabelle Weidenfeld, Rubinstein's partner during his last years.