Small Stone #31


Beethoven: A State of Wonder.  Amazement too, which is what I felt last night after attending the second of nine planned concerts, over 2 and 1/2 years, in which Gregg Pauley will play all 32 of  Beethoven’s piano sonatas.  I’m not a musician or well-schooled in music so I don’t fully grasp the feat it is to perform all 32 sonatas, but I’ve been told the hiking equivalent would be to climb Mt. Everest.  I don’t think there’s any writing equivalent, because writers don’t perform in the same way and don’t use their bodies with fierce intensity and focus to create a world of beauty in front of an audience.  This concert series fascinates me, this State of Wonder, exactly because of the intensity and focus that’s so evident in what Gregg Pauley has undertaken, and what he’s accomplishing.  Not only is it incredible to experience Beethoven’s sonatas, and be bathed in the brilliance of his compositions, it’s incredible to witness an artist achieving a masterpiece of performance. I’m not a performer, but I have a fierce passion for creation, and being in the presence of someone realizing a passionate ambition is thrilling.

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