Here are more lines from a wonderful book.
I truly hope someone will find encouragement and inspiration in these words.
Again, many of these quotes made me think of Ted!
Quotations from Cellist Pablo Casals taken from:
‘Casals and the Art of Interpretation’ by David Blum
* “I will say only elemental things, nothing complicated – as everything ought to be, beginning with life. But you must know that the simplest things are the ones that count.”
* ”Technique, wonderful sound…all of this is sometimes astonishing – but it is not enough.”
* “This melody must descend like a leaf which falls from a tree in autumn – never a direct descent, but a series of gently cascading movements.”
* “As in a dream,” he said, when rehearsing a passage from the slow movement of Beethoven’s Fourth Symphony. At the beginning of the 3rd movement of Beethoven’s
D Major Cello Sonata he commented, “These are not notes – they are only a first impression; they seem to say ‘What comes now?’ – mystery, mystery…”
* Casals once said: “You will see where to make the vibrato, the crescendo, the diminuendo of the notes – all these things you have to be present to, but present more in your feelings. Not present only here,” he said, as he tapped on his head, “because it is not profound enough; but here“and he drew his hand to his heart.
* “Each note is like a link in a chain – important in itself and also as a connection between what has been and what will be.”
* “Remember,” he said, “that all music, in general, is a succession of rainbows.” The rainbow arcs which Casals traced in music were imbued with the secret of proportion.
* Speaking on the need to present music onstage without ‘breaking the spell’: “Tuning with the bow disturbs the audience. They have nothing to do with the instrument.”
* “Bach was thought of as a professor who knew very well his counterpoint and fugue – and nothing else. That narrow way of explaining Bach – the ‘Herr Professor’ – very sad.
Bach has every feeling: lovely, tragic, dramatic, poetic…always soul and heart and expression. How he enters into the most profound of ourselves. Let us find that Bach!”
* ”Tempestuous, that is Bach; Bach is passionate, passionate!”
* “Bach was the great colourist! He loved color. In the first prelude from the Well-Tempered Clavier he begins with only arpeggios – but what color!”
* Speaking of piece from the Bach Cello Suites: “It is fantastic to think that one note after the other there can be melody, the central voices and the bass all together. A wonderful polyphony – and this is an invention of Bach. We have to give the proper expression to each voice.”
* ”Let us not forget that the greatest composers were the greatest thieves. They took from everyone and from everywhere.”
* “Always try to find variety – it is the secret of music.”
* “ Real understanding does not come from what we learn in books; it comes from what we learn from love – love of nature, of music, of man. For only what is learned in that way is truly understood.”
* While helping a student study a piece Casals was asked 'How do you count this here, Maestro?', answered Casals: "With my soul."