Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Is Alfred Brendel A Poet?

On Radio 4 this morning, there was a long feature on the world famous pianist Alfred Brendel, who turns 80 soon, and who has turned from playing concert piano to emphasising his role as poet, cemented by a new collection out any day now.  Brendel has been published by Faber, and writes an odd sort of poem: free verse, mainly, with surreal or zany references to often musicological situations.  His Mozart murder poem is a good example of where his ear takes him.  I am not a classical music critic but accept Brendel's preeminence in that field.  I wonder, would he be attended to as a poet otherwise?  The UK has many equally (more?) deserving older poets of great achievement who could do with a spot on national morning radio, too.  I raise this because in the piece he was asked whether he was a pianist or poet, and he had the modesty to say both.  Glenn Gould, bless him, was a genius as an editor and radio man, but never let that get to his head.  The title poet - for those who wish to take it - is always there, a hat on a high hat-stand we can all reach on tip toes - but those who claim the fedora should be careful it not slip off our too-big heads.
Post a Comment

Popular Posts

About Eyewear the blog

Eyewear THE BLOG is the most read British poetry blog-zine of all time, getting more than 25,000 page-views a month. It began in 2005 and has now been read by over 2.5 million.


The views expressed by editor Todd Swift are not necessarily shared by contributing poets and reviewers. Any material on this blog infringing copyright will be removed immediately upon request.
To order books from Eyewear PUBLISHING LIMITED, go to: www.eyewearpublishing.com