Violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and pianist Lambert Orkis have a musical collaboration that goes back almost 30 years, and are still going strong. They’ll be coming back to the Green Music Center’s Weill Hall in the Spring for a recital. They say that they’ve been able to be successful for so long because they’ve been building on a musical foundation that was strong from the start.
“We met in the 1980s, when Lambert and I worked together with Mstislav Rostropovich,” Mutter says. “He suggested that we should try to do recitals together, as I was desperately looking for a musical partner, and in ’88 we started on our first recital tour… It was very clear to both of us that we had a certain way of sensing each other’s musical directions, and it was a dialogue from the very beginning on which of course deepened with changing repertoire, enlarging repertoire, and constant rehearsing.” Spending that kind of time and effort working on interpretations has made them better collaborators. “There’s a freedom of playing and talking to each other in a musical sense, because we not only closely listen, but we are there in the instant of creation of the other person’s musical thoughts, and we can spin that sentence to the end, which is something I guess you can not really rehearse, it just has to be there. And luckily we found each other, and we are travelling the world since 29 years.” Orkis, who had previously regularly played recitals with Rostropovich, says the fun of performance lies in always exploring new ideas. “The great pianist Arthur Schnabel once said that we play this music because there’s probably more to it than we ever get out of it in any particular go. Keep on digging as you go on, and find more beauties in it.”