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The question refers to pre-covid or when covid conditions get better so concerts are not particularly limited.

I think some pianist(Trifonov, Grosvenor, Debaruge?) play many concerts each year, perhaps over 100. Do you think this is a good idea? What is the maximum number of concerts and recital/concerto programs do you think are ideal? Why do you think some pianists who probably don't need the money or exposure choose to play so many concerts? Do you know of some pianists today who play a lot of concerts at least pre covid?

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Whatever works for them.

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To me, ideal number of concerts depends on: the pianist’s perspective and the ability to stay fresh and focused.

I don’t see how any independent person can define an ‘ideal’ number that is the same for all performers.


"Music, rich, full of feeling, not soulless, is like a crystal on which the sun falls and brings forth from it a whole rainbow" - F. Chopin
"I never dreamt with my own two hands I could touch the sky" - Sappho

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I actually dont even know how many concerts most pianists do play. Is there stats somewhere ?

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Originally Posted by Sidokar
I actually dont even know how many concerts most pianists do play. Is there stats somewhere ?
Top ones 100-120

Those who are more picky or have families and big reputation 50-70

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Even Pros have to practice.
So why not combine the best of two worlds and get paid for keeping the repertoire fresh?
grin

Last edited by brennbaer; 10/28/21 08:55 AM.
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I got the idea for posting this thread after seeing how tired Trifonov looks after some of his concerts. My FB feed shows videos of the end of many of his concerts and he often looks drained. I guess anyone could feel exhausted after playing a demanding concerto or recital program, and I don't know how many concerts he typically plays in a year although my guess the number is very high.

Between the energy required for a concert and all the traveling, why play so many concerts? My guess is he and some similar pianists are already very wealthy and are popular enough so that they don't have to feel they should strike while the iron is hot. OTOH maybe my age makes it impossible for me to understand how much energy some of the younger superstar pianists have.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 10/28/21 10:59 AM.
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I got the idea for posting this thread after seeing how tired Trifonov looks after some of his concerts. My FB feed shows videos of the end of many of his concerts and he often looks drained. I guess anyone could feel exhausted after playing a demanding concerto or recital program, and I don't know how many concerts he typically plays in a year although my guess the number is very high.


Not only does he play technically/physically demanding programs, they are often long! I've attended 2 that were both over two hours long, not including intermission! (Most are closer to 90 minutes.)

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I once read that the pianist that set the record for the most performances in Kiev in one season was Vladimir Horowitz.


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Originally Posted by Sidokar
I actually dont even know how many concerts most pianists do play. Is there stats somewhere ?

Most pianists have a website with details of concerts.

Here is link for Trifonov.

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Gottschalk talked about playing about 30 concerts in one month, as I recall. But concertizing has changed since then.


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Originally Posted by BDB
Gottschalk talked about playing about 30 concerts in one month, as I recall. But concertizing has changed since then.
I don't remember the details but some famous pianists from Europe who toured the U.S. in the late 1800s and early 1900s played an astonishing number of concerts on their tours.

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When one is (relatively) young and has energy to burn, one grasps at every opportunity that comes one's way to get noticed around the world. That's why budding concert pianists learn all their concertos and solo rep while still in their teens, because when they get into the thick of things, it's one concert after another, with barely a pause for breath. (Until COVID put paid to that, when many of them switched to other jobs like HGV driving, perhaps permanently......)

Engagements will soon drop, unless you develop such a big reputation that you command the sort of fees that allow you to reduce your concerts, pick & choose the most profitable, even take a sabbatical. The young lions & lionesses - the recent competition winners - are all chomping at the bit to take their turn.

At least they don't have to retire in their 30s, unlike tennis, golf, football players and athletes. (Well, many of them turn to teaching, often because their concert careers dry up......)


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Flying around the world all year long and coping with massive jetlags all the time is not for everyone. Most pianists seem to coordinate their travels so that they spend some extended period on one continent and play multiple concerts before moving to the next continent. However, looking at Trifonov's schedule, this isn't always the case, e.g. he flies to Dallas, TX for a few days in between concerts in Europe. Why don't these top pianists spend more time in one place instead of flying around the globe all the time? E.g. one could spend a few months in Europe, then a few months in the US and then in Asia, instead of moving every few weeks. It would be better for the jetlags and for the environment as well. Is it just a scheduling issue or do some people actually enjoy traveling that much?


Kawai ES-110

"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is never enough for music."
-Sergei Rachmaninoff.

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