My Aunt was in London yesterday and having not seen her in a while I happily accepted a dinner invite and an offer to see a show. In hindsight I probably should have asked what the show was, but anyway, last night, I along with several thousand other people crammed themselves into the Hammersmith Apollo to watch new-age pianist and composer Ludovico Einaudi.
Einaudi is a far cry from my usual Spotify playlists, and a stark alternative to the mainstream R&B videos you’ll find me watching on The Box. Despite his differences though I appreciated his exceptional talent and two hours in, he left myself and others utterly captivated.
This was a photo taken during one of his later tracks.
As his fingers danced around the piano with both purpose and pace, Einaudi sequenced his chords with the supporting cast of instruments in such a way that it transcended you into a moment that was so deep and intense.
By the time the tune reached its crescendo, I found myself completely entranced in the story it was telling. It was hauntingly beautiful.
It was then, right at the end of what is arguably one of the most emotional pieces of music written this century, I suddenly found myself wondering a different question entirely. In search of an answer, I turned to my Aunt and asked:”Is it just me, or does the pianist look like he’s got his willy out?”.
And just like that, Einaudi’s spell was broken. What had been a very middle class and cultured experience, suddenly became a regression to a primary school moment, as I sat there, watching the pianist’s shadow sway back and forth, trying not to draw attention to the tears of laughter that by this point were streaming down my face.
Culture, I don’t think it’s for me and I’m not expecting another visit from my Aunt anytime soon.