Renaud Capuçon Conversation

>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
So, hello.>>Renaud Capucon: Hello. Good evening.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Welcome Back.>>Renaud Capucon: Thank you.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Thank you. You were here many years ago.>>Renaud Capucon:
Yeah, when I was young. A long time ago.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah. Okay. I was probably
young too then. And when you were here you
looked at the instruments. Maybe tried a couple. And then your brother was
here in 2010 and played so. Thank you for coming back.>>Renaud Capucon: Pleasure.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
To play now. Before we get talking about
what you’re going to do tonight in your program, I
really want to hear about all the amazing
things that you do. You balance solo recitals, chamber music, festivals,
teaching. And like where does that –
tell me about last summer. You did a mini summer
residency at Versailles. I want to apply for that. I want to do that. You know where you had you know
the violins, the 24 violins in the different rooms. Can you tell us a little
bit about that project?>>Renaud Capucon: Well first
of all thank you for being here. As you can hear I’m French. Nobody’s perfect. And I’m very happy to be here. Well, you described like
musician life you know. I teach. I play concerto. I play recitals. I play chamber music. Basically, I’m a musician. So, I am so much in love
with music since I’m four. It takes my life somehow
because I have my family my wife and my son. But music was always
kind of the center. And so, I very naturally
composed my life with different things. It feeds me. So, it – so, I’m next
week for example. Tomorrow I go to New
York Philharmonic to play a Pincher piece which
is a wonderful German composer who wrote this piece
and we play it together with the New York Philharmonic. And the next week I play in
Leon with [inaudible] in France. A program where I play Bach
concertos and I conduct and then I play with
[inaudible]. And tonight, I play
French recital. Well for me it’s
all its just music. And so, it might sound a bit
like doing so many things but at the end for me
it’s doing the same thing. It’s just sharing
music with people. I don’t know but
it’s [inaudible]. And this Versailles
project yeah, it’s sounds very you know
Versailles France whatever. Just because as president
of Versailles castle who is a very good friend since
a long time told me you have to come and do something. And I said, Yeah, okay.” But you know you don’t just
do a recital in Versailles. Okay it’s nice but we have
to think about something. So, as they do a lot of modern
art exhibitions in Versailles. They do Bach music a lot. And they do some
you know Jeff Koons and all these people exposing. And but they never did since [foreign language]
they never had any premier of modern music. So, premier of a piece. And I thought let’s do
exactly the opening. It’s instead of having Jeff
Koons let’s have a world premier of a piece. So, we had this recital actually
at the Bacee [phonetic] Franc and [inaudible] Dusapin piece
world premiere in Versailles. So, when I call Pascal Dusapin
who is almost 60 years old. He’s our major French
composer after Dutier. And I said, “Would you like to
be premiered in Versailles?” He had this kind of oh, why not. Anyway, so then from this
I thought it was nice to have this recital. And also, to play
in different places. So, then I did some – we
asked the public to come for three little
concerts of 40 minutes. And then would stay up
because we didn’t have to put the chairs. So, I played one recital
with the [inaudible] in the Chapel Royal
which was wonderful. Then I played a duel concert in Salon Decur [phonetic]
which was amazing. And we finished in the
Galerie des Glaces playing with the harpsicord some Bach. And it was just a treat for me
to – and it was just magical. And it was one day. Okay, it was one
day in Versailles. A very – I got a
lot of inspiration. And today when I
just arrived here, and I tried this amazing
instruments which are here. And the one I’m going to play
tonight it’s – I called my wife and I said, “Well this one of the most inspiring day
ever you know because I get to play this incredible
Kresler instrument.” And she said something
to me very, very true. She said, “Well I
feel that you are like if you would
cheat on your violin.” It’s very strange. Yeah, because I was since two
days I’m completely excited. Like because I know this
fiddle is probably the only – one of the only one
which would make me think about perhaps giving mine away. I play a wonderful del Gesu
of 1737 which was owned by Isaac Stern for 50 years. It’s called the [inaudible]
the Panette. And it’s a violin
of my life clearly. I say it again now here
because I so played the only one which is – which could be
the other violin of my life. But it’s not. S. I already ask if it
possible to by everything. It’s not possible. So, I.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
He did ask that. I’m curious though
back at Versailles. Were you – did the
surroundings inspire you? I mean we go over there and
we look at this beautiful hall and imagine what the
concerts were like in there. Was that – did that
effect you at all?>>Renaud Capucon: Of course. With every place is inspiring. So, that’s why here
I get inspired because I also cherish all
the recording with Adolf Bush and Will [inaudible] and Howe and I mean I’m somebody
really is very sensible to what’s happening
in which place. Also, I’m more and more to get
– although I get, I’m influenced by what this political
situations, economic situations in the countries, demographic
one, geographic one. You can’t just arrive n a place and think okay I’m playing
Bombay tonight and then I play in Aspen and then I play in
wherever you know like Tokyo.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Versailles.>>Renaud Capucon: Versailles. I mean it’s a – you have
to go there, I think.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah, I know. I know that.>>Renaud Capucon: If you want,
we can organize something. But only to say that I’m not a
composer I’m just you know I’m serving Brahms, Beethoven,
Shubert, Hoank [phonetic], WC. Trying to give the
best of what I can do. And but I need to be connected
to what happens in my country in the country I visit. For example, today in
France just a couple of hours ago there was a big
walk against antisemitism because it’s quite terrible in
France what’s happening now. And of course, I’m going to play
tonight thinking about this – not thinking a lot but just
I know it happened today. I had a lot of friends
who were there. And so, it’s important
for me to be part of all this community life in
my country and in the world. And somehow the violin is also
a way to bring not only music and fun and beauty and
emotions but it’s – I feel like a messenger.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Messenger. Uh-huh. That’s great. Okay. So, then the
Easter festival and the 25 concerts there that
you are – you’ve programmed. Tell us a little bit about that.>>Renaud Capucon: Oh so, I
program since I’m 15 years old. I love to program. Not computer program. Just chamber music
and orchestras and things program,
musical programs. I created my own
[inaudible] when I was 18 in my hometown for 15 years. And then I stopped,
and I thought because my son was just born,
and I thought now it’s enough. And but after one year
I missed it so much. So, I thought I would create
a festival Aix-en Provence which is a beautiful
place in France.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Okay, so he goes from Versailles
to Provence. Okay.>>Renaud Capucon: And so,
I created a festival there which is now seven
years beginning 2013. And we program there yeah
25, 26 concerts a year. And I can welcome all my
violinist friends you know. [inaudible] came and
James Ehnes and who? I mean a lot of people. [inaudible] all the
best violinists came. A lot of conductors, orchestras, Vienna Philharmonic,
London Symphony. And singers and it’s
wonderful because I for two weeks I just
stay next in Provence and I have the feeling to be a
concierge [foreign language] I welcome my friends. It’s amazing. So, I – we plan things
in advance of course. I play with them sometime. And it’s again the same
joy of sharing music.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Uh-huh.>>Renaud Capucon: That
I love with public.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Well that’s great. So, you have a musical family. Your brothers played
here in 2010 the cello. Did you grow up playing
music a lot? How little – how young were you when you first started
playing the violin?>>Renaud Capucon:
Well I began at four. My parents not at all
musicians which is very nice. Because there is pressure enough when you are kid
playing the violin. They discovered music
in a very natural way and a festival next
to their place. And I began the violin. My sister was a –
she’s five years older. And she began the
piano before then. She stopped. And my younger brother
who is five years younger than me began the
cello five years later. And so now we are two
professional musicians in the family. And the children of my
sister are also playing cello and dance. And so, it’s – now we kind of
have a very musical family. But which comes out from nowhere because we are coming
from the mountains. I mean we are from.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: Hmm.>>Renaud Capucon: The Alps. Chambery small town
near Leon and Geneva. And if you know France
is very small country but it’s very nice. And that’s all.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
How did you pick the violin? Did your parents?>>Renaud Capucon: Oh,
it’s a very common story. I was three and a half and I was
just singing in kind of chorus with a woman playing piano. And it was kind of
education to hear. And my mother asked her would like to make him
begin an instrument. What do you think we should do?>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Uh-huh.>>Renaud Capucon: And she
said, “This little boy, he has a very good ear. You should try the violin.” So, thanks to her I’m violinist. That’s.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And you kept up with it. And you.>>Renaud Capucon:
Yeah, I loved it.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: Won.>>Renaud Capucon: The funny
thing is I you know a lot of journalist ask you
sometime are you are a prodigy, you’re a genius whatever so. I always no. Einstein and Minwin
[phonetic] are geniuses. We are all trying
you know our best. And of course, I
had kind of a gift. But then it’s I think
everybody has a gift somehow. So, the difference is how you – which luck you have
to make it grow. And how you develop this talent and how you have
this love for it. And my parents were
clever enough to not to know anything about music. And not to push. But just to let me do
what I wanted to do. And I wanted to be a violinist. I didn’t know why. But I wanted to be a violinist. So.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And so, you studied with Isaac Stern
a little or how did you?>>Renaud Capucon: Well
I met him when I was 19 in Varbier [phonetic] festival. But before I had a teacher
who was a lot in America. My main teacher Vida Reynolds
she was a wonderful violinist playing in the [inaudible]
Orchestra teaching in [inaudible] for 20 years. She took the class
of symbolists. And so, she was my teacher
because then she came to France. So, I studied her between
eight years old until 20. And meanwhile I did [inaudible] and when I finished
all this in Berlin. And then I went to
study for one summer with Isaac Stern in Switzerland. And this was really a meeting. He was very impressive. We were all completely
terrified by him. Not because he was not
nice, he was very nice. But were just – you know he was
– he had his power and his way of being in a very nice way. But we were completely – yeah,
first when we all met him, we were like sweating
crazy I remember. And then he was amazing. He was you know picking and saying everything
which was so true.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Uh-huh.>>Renaud Capucon:
To each of us. He was pointing the things. The funny story is at this time
I had a very modest violin. And I needed to find
another one. So, I asked him to
write me a letter to help me to find sponsorship. So, he did. And he wrote a letter
which I never used because life happened
differently. But I still have his letter. When he says I should – anybody
should help me to find a violin. And exactly 10 years
later it happens that bank bought his violin
for me which is his violin. And I think life
sometime is strange because he wrote me a letter. I never use it but
then I play his violin. And he passed away before,
so I didn’t have the chance to speak about it to him.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
We got his papers. And you got his violin. And here you are. It’s wonderful connection. And I guess what I want to talk about a little bit
is your violin. It’s 1737 Guameri. Tell us little bit about
playing on that now since 2005?>>Renaud Capucon: 2005. Yeah, in 2005 a Swiss
bank bought it for me. So, it was their property. And so, I could choose a
violin which was a treat. And I chose this one. I knew straight away.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
You had a choice of?>>Renaud Capucon: I had – I
could choose the one I wanted. They wanted to buy
me a del Gesu. I had a the Strat before which
was on loaner from a foundation. And I tried a couple of ones. And the [inaudible]l
which was wonderful, but it didn’t really you
know playing a violin it’s like meeting somebody. You can meet fantastic people. You meet hundred people. And then one you want to speak
until 3:00 In the morning. You have no idea
why, but it fits. Same with a violin. And plus love you know.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah.>>Renaud Capucon: So. I wouldn’t express
this everybody knows. But then I thought it
was really my voice. And the bank bought it for me. So, it was in 2005. Well what I felt was like
I knew that straight away that this instrument would
be my voice, my partner, my way of communicate. And we had just making one. And I’m the owner since
one year and a half. It doesn’t mean I finish paying. But it means it’s mine. And it’s one of the most – it’s one of the most difficult
decision in my life you know.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
To buy it?>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah, to buy
it because you don’t just say, “Okay I will by a del Gesu.” You think a lot before
going to this direction. And I have to say my wife was
wonderful because she really – if she would have one person
doubt I would have never done it. And she really supported
me for this. And since it’s mine it’s another
step because I have the feeling since it’s mine it
sounds better. Of course, it doesn’t
sound better. Just it’s here. But it shows that the
fact there is this trust and this it makes you
going a step further. And that’s also why I feel so
strange to love Kreisler today. It’s very strange feeling.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
What is the sound that you love so much in your violin?>>Renaud Capucon: Well this
violin has a lot of del Gesu but particularly this
one and the Kreisler. They have – they are very warm,
very sounding like violas. They are not at all sounding
aggressive or very powerful in the E string which
they are anyway. But everything is round and
everything is like a mix of cashmere, silk and everything
soft which you can imagine. And I said to you before
when I played a few notes of the Kreisler which is the
same feeling when I play mine. As a feeling to go in the
bath essential oils you know. It’s feeds you. It’s warm. It’s comfortable. It’s just amazing. And so, I felt this was
my [foreign language]. The story of this instrument
is very interesting. It was owned by Vuillaume. It was owned by French count
called Vicomte de Penete in Bugue in France. And then by his daughter
Countess de Baulab [phonetic]. And just to give you an example. This summer I was in – I
received a letter from the mayor of Baulab [phonetic] which
is a very, very tiny village in France which I’ve
never heard about but of this Countess
Baulab [phonetic]. And the mayor wrote me like
we are done some research and we know that you play
the violin which was owned by la Contessa Balabe [phoetic]
who was living in our village. And we would you to
play recital there. And I think it’s so nice. Because this violin has
a story every where I go. And then Isaac Stern
both bought in ’47. Then it was in America
between ’47 and ’94. Then he sold it to
Mr. Felton in Seattle. So, it was in America again. And it came back
to Europe with me.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Great. So, you kindly agreed to play
our Kreisler, Guameri as well.>>Renaud Capucon: Well I.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Tonight.>>Renaud Capucon: You kindly
agree – make me, right? You know it. It’s a very nice
agreement from both sides.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
So, actually the audience is in for a treat tonight because
you’ll share the program with both instruments. You’ll play the first
half on your instrument. If you choose. 17 [inaudible].>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah, I was.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And then.>>Renaud Capucon:
I was hesitating. I thought as I love
this Kreisler so much I should
paly everything. And then I thought first of all it wouldn’t be
fair for my violin. No, and to be honest I think
it’s very interesting for you to listen to these two amazing. I think it’s one of the
five most amazing del Gesu in the world. So, I think we are
all very lucky tonight to be able to listen to them. Because I always
say you know even if it’s mine now this del Gesu. It’s owned by you
because I’m playing but you are listening to it. So, these violins are
owned by the people who are listening to them. It’s like a very nice if you
see your house form outside. It’s owned by the people who
look at them – look at it. And so, I will play the first
half with my violin 1737 and then second half which
is [inaudible] sonata with the Kreisler which is 1730.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
The Kreisler is about 1730. And what sounds are you
hearing from the Kreisler? Did you hear today? And I must say I
found it fascinating when you first picked
up the Kreisler today and you played a note or two
and you’re like ah I remember. I mean.>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
just barely any sound. And it came back to you.>>Renaud Capucon:
I remember because.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
What was it?>>Renaud Capucon: I
tried it 15 years ago. And I remembered that this
violin was the most amazing sound I ever heard. And in between I got my violin
and I kind of wanted to forget that I tried this one. And now it came out. Well it’s a sound – you
know sound is very – you can’t describe a sound. That’s I always give to my
students some examples of images or feelings or sensations. A sincerity for a
string instrument is like sharing your
DNA because if any of colleague would
be now playing the — my violin or the Kreisler
one they would sound completely different. And then would express with
their words what the sound is. But the sound would be described
by the fact they played. You know what I mean. So.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
I – yeah, I do.>>Renaud Capucon: This Kreisler
violin will sound today this song because I play
it like I play. And if Josh Bell would play
tomorrow it will sound his way and a completely different way. So, I think about Josh
because he’s a friend and we mentioned him before. But so, in a way of course
it has particularities. The wood is very how can I say? You have the feeling
the wood is speaking. I try out some Strat’s which
are here which are incredible. But I more del Gesu guy. Like, it’s like I won’t do
a comparison with anything because I’m always wrong. But I always mention
this red wine thing. If you speak about French
red wines, you have Bordeaux and Burgun and for my taste
del Gesu would be more Bordeaux and Strat would be
more Burgundy. And but as soon as I begin this,
and people say no it’s not true because Burgun is
[inaudible] so. But again, I think you have
your own way of preserving it. And at the end it’s which
love you put inside – in it. And.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
I appreciate that because the
violins been here since he donated it in 1952. He had it since 1926. And he had, had other
fine violins. But a lot of times
people come here, and they know many violinists,
great violinists have played it. But a lot of them
play it like Kreisler or like what they had
heard Kreisler playing. And I like that you’re
coming to it with you know your
own DNA maybe. You own.>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah. I know I think it’s
like a singer. My voice is what I am. And the violin whichever
violin it is, if I try now for you the six violins which
are here or five violins. It will all sound different, but it will always be me
somehow, which is logical. And even if I play modern
instruments it will still sound like me. So, of course when I play
this Kreisler it sounds like different.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
There I found a lot of connections between
you and the library.>>Renaud Capucon: Oh.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: Well the Kreisler,
the Brahms concerto.>>Renaud Capucon: Huh.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And the Kreisler cadenza. Also did you know that Kreisler
wrote film music in 1930?>>Renaud Capucon: No. Yes, I didn’t know.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
He did. He wrote the violin
part for a film. And you have now won an award
for an album that just came out Cinema which
is on film music. And on that you have
a piece by Korngold. You know we have the
Korngold collection here.>>Renaud Capucon: I know.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
So, I’d like you to tell the audience
about this you know aspect of your violin playing and.>>Renaud Capucon: Well I discovered the Korngold
concerto when I was 20. And I fell in love
with it straight away. It was through the recording
of Highfit and Gil Shaham. And then I – when I like
a composer I love to play of course a few pieces. But then I for Korngold
I played his concerto and I played all
the chamber music I like to hear everything around. It’s like if you begin
to read if you like Prost and then you want
to read everything. If you like you know
[inaudible]. So, then from this I
discovered his film music which is incredible. And somehow, it’s very
interesting to see that Korngold an amazing
composer in Vienna who wrote the Die tote
Stadt this amazing opera. It’s a violin concerto later. But he was a violin sonata
for Flesch and Schnabel when he was 18 or something. He wrote amazing pieces. Then he had to leave
because of this antisemitism and because of the war. He went to Los Angeles. Then in Los Angeles
what happened? He was Korngold. He was a star in Europe. And then he began to
write some film music. So, Korngold wrote his own
music adapted to film music. So, it’s wrong to say that Korngold is a
film music composer. He’s an amazing composer
who wrote also film music. And only to say that
when I came to my — this idea of doing a
cinema recording based on my huge admiration for the
[inaudible] Itzhak Perlman did 20 years ago for semiclassical. Recorded two sets of film music
which I think I should tell him that I think I must be the one who heard these CDs
the most in the world. And I always thought I would
do something like this one day. And so, since 10 years
I’m thinking lets do it. But it’s never the right timing. Then again, my wife was kind
of pushing me and telling and me “When are you doing it?” And two years ago, I
woke up n the morning and I said, “Now I’m doing it. Don’t ask me why now. It’s just.” And of course, there are
some pieces of Korngold. There is some Nina [inaudible]. Some Morricone with
John Williams. And such a joy to do
this movie recording. And now we got Jazz so what is
a [foreign language] in France because it sold a lot. And it nice because it brings to
classical music another public which is there are still a
lot of people who are scared of classical music
at least in France. And we think that
film music is more for them then classical music because they don’t deserve
somehow classical music. It’s too difficult for them. And I thought it was very nice
pedagogic way to tell them look if you like this it
is classical music. Film music is classical music. And most of the composers
which are on the CD did also like Rota, Morricone,
Williams, Korngold. I mean so many of
them wrote concertos, pieces for orchestra and. So, it’s a nice,
very nice adventure. And I will certainly
do a volume two soon.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Oh, good. We’ll look forward to that. So, back to connections. Kreisler and you both
were awarded the Commander of Legion of Honor in France.>>Renaud Capucon: Oh.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And on this theme here.>>Renaud Capucon: I
didn’t know you were.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
What is that about? How does that?>>Renaud Capucon: Oh, it’s a
presidents in France who decide to give you this red thing
here which I’m not wearing.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: You
don’t have to wear it every?>>Renaud Capucon: but
– no you don’t wear it for – I don’t wear it.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
When you’re playing the violin?>>Renaud Capucon:
For the concert now. But it’s an honor. It’s [foreign language]
recognition. And I was very honored.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
That’s good. Congratulations. I thought [inaudible]
were in the same league. And to that end more
on these connections with you and Kreisler. You have children. You mentioned a son.>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And his name is?>>Renaud Capucon: Elliott.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
My daughter is Elliott.>>Renaud Capucon: Oh.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
We are connected now. Does he play any?>>Renaud Capucon: You
know he began the violin because my wife wanted him to. I didn’t think about it. And okay so he tried
for one year and a half. And then one day recently
he called me, and he said, “Daddy I want to stop the
violin for three reasons.” And I said, “Okay.”. “First
reason I – it’s very hard.” I said, “Yes I know.”. “Second
reason is the teacher is not hmm.”. I said, “Okay,
you’re right.” And then with a very curt
little voice he said, “And I think daddy I don’t like
the violin.”. What can you say? I mean I said, “Fine.” And it’s very nice because
somehow, I’m sure he’s kind of – it’s difficult for him to play
the instruments that’s brings me away all the time. I’m sure this is a reason we
speak about later perhaps. But I didn’t want to create
any you know frustration or [inaudible] him
of course not. So, we’ll see. Perhaps he will play
again one day. And I – I’m not a person who
wants my son to do what I do. I want him to be happy. I think my parents
did the same with us. They really wanted
us to be happy in what we would love to do. And my mission is to do
the same with my son. So, if he wants to be – right
now at this age you want to be – you change every month. So, he has a fireman
time and all this. Now, he’s in the director
of school for this month. We’ll see months.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
How old is he?>>Renaud Capucon: He’s eight.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Oh, this is perfect. Okay. So, Kreisler also learned
the violin when he was young. He was called a prodigy also. And started at about
four years old. And I have a little
surprise for you. Where is it? When he was seven or
eight this was his violin. And we just had it restored.>>Renaud Capucon:
From Kreisler?>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah.>>Renaud Capucon: Wow.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And it’s going to make its debut tonight. I would like you to see it. And if you want maybe
just play a little.>>Renaud Capucon: Of course.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Bit on it. Okay.>>Renaud Capucon: Amazing. This is a real surprise. I mean it’s not organized
before that’s what I mean.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Let’s see if that stays there.>>Renaud Capucon: Thank you. Very small.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
So, this – it is very small. This violin was given in
1952 along with the Guameri that you’ll hear tonight that
we call the Kreisler Guameri. Kreisler I.>>Renaud Capucon: No.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: Oh. I found from his
biography seemed to be about seven or eight years old. The bow is in there
too that he used.>>Renaud Capucon:
It’s very cute. [ Laughter ]>>Renaud Capucon: It’s not
my size but [inaudible].>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah. But your son would be about
ready to be playing this. So, Kreisler played this
for about two years. And then he was you know
given a – and he grew up and he got a bigger violin. By the time he was 12 he won an
award in Paris and then he came over to Carnegie and
did his debut here but.>>Renaud Capucon:
Very [inaudible].>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
It’s kind of curious where his sound came from.>>Renaud Capucon: Very small. [ Laughter ] [ Music ]>>Renaud Capucon:
It’s very small. [ Laughter ] [ Music ]>>Renaud Capucon: But
it’s a fantastic quality. It’s – normally these small
violins are you know yah. [ Music ]>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah. [ Music ]>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
He has to be light with his touch on this. Like a young child would be. [ Music ]>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah. Okay. That’s [inaudible]. It’s not played since
a long time.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: Probably since Kreisler was a
child because when it came here.>>Renaud Capucon: How did
you – how did it come back?>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: It just cam back a
couple weeks ago.>>Renaud Capucon: From the?>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
From being restored. No, he gave it in 1952.>>Renaud Capucon:
Oh [inaudible].>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: and it’s been here pretty
much probably how he left it as a child. And we finally got it restored.>>Renaud Capucon: Amazing.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
The past year. And you don’t have to play it. It just. [ Laughter ] [ Music ]>>Renaud Capucon:
I just you know. [ Music ]>>Renaud Capucon: It’s a very
warm sound for this size violin. Very good [inaudible].>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
So, it’s what Kreisler heard when he was a young child.>>Renaud Capucon: It’s a
great present for myself. Thank you very much.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Okay. [ Laughter ]>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Well, you get the bigger violin. And he gets the smaller one.>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah. Thank you.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Well thank you for doing that. For debuting that. And come back with your son. And maybe we can convince
to restudy the violin. Now would you be interested in playing any excerpts
from your film music?>>Renaud Capucon: Oh now?>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah. On your own instrument or am
I putting you on the spot? Or do we have to go?>>Renaud Capucon: I think – no
the things is I would love too but it would be nicer
with orchestra. If I play alone this [inaudible]
will miss some things. I think the best thing is if we spend a couple minutes
speaking a little bit. And then I will play
really on stage.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Okay.>>Renaud Capucon: But no, this
movie music it’s beautiful also because there is the
orchestra behind. And it brings to you
to you know you just – then you really see
the pictures. If I would play it
now, I don’t know. I can if you.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: No,
we’ll wait of r an encore maybe or something like that.>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah. Or I can – I can – I will do
I’ll do something for you.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Okay. Thank you. [ Background Noise ] [ Music ]>>Renaud Capucon:
[inaudible] came out. Schindler’s list first. And perhaps you know this. [ Music ] [ Inaudible ]>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Thank you so much. That was, that was
really touching. Thank you for doing that. [ Applause ]>>Renaud Capucon: It is
better with orchestra though.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
I don’t know. You played that earlier today. And we asked him to play it
again, it was so beautiful. Thank you, now. The third time. I guess – is it time
for questions? Does anyone have a question? Yes? [ Background Noise ]>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Thank you. [ Background Noise ] [ Inaudible ]>>Renaud Capucon: I’m here. [ Background Noise ]>>The wonderful stories of
the violins makes me wonder about the selection of the bows. And how you go about
choosing the bows to play like for both your
instrument and the instrument from the library’s collection. Whether – are you using your
bow with the library’s violin? Did you switch?>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah.>>Are you switching bows?>>Renaud Capucon:
Good question. As you could see
I have a few bows. The problem with bows is – so
I have a few [inaudible] bows. And I play now with a
Tourte which is amazing. And problem is this Tourte
is so amazing that I – at the end I play
only this Tourte. Because even if I have some
amazing other bows it makes a sound which is just so pure. And so, I played – I will play
the Kreisler with this bow. And also, I actually play on
the almost only on this one. And but every bow I’m owing
is kind of the same weight. It’s between 60 and 61 grams. And for me to really, it’s
not easy to choose a bow but it’s completely instinctive. I – my violin maker sometime
he calls me and says, “I think there is
something for you.” So, he knows me well. But I pick a bow already
without playing I know if it’s the right weight. Somehow, I feel it. Sometime I can say, “Oh, this
one is 62 or – and it’s right. It’s quite impressive. Just a feeling. And then I do three notes
and I say, “Yes or no.” it’s absolutely clear. It’s a kind of – it
speaks through the arm. So, it’s not a – I remember
sometime I met a colleague of mine 10 years ago. And he said, “How can you
– how do you buy a bow?” I say, “What do you mean?”. He say “But how do you know
that it’s a bow for you?” And I say, “Well, I don’t’ know. I try and then.” And then he said,
“But how do you know?” And it’s strange. And I’ve met a couple
of colleagues who have no idea how – they don’t have this
feeling of the arm. And for me it’s the
key of the sound. Because the sound is
completely 100% from here. 90% — 98% the rest
is a bit of vibrato. But it’s really owned
by the right arm. And it’s choosing a bow is
something absolutely incredible. Thank you.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Like choosing an instrument.>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah. I always say to my students
if you don’t have enough money to buy a beautiful
instrument buy a better bow. It will make the
instrument sounding better. Which is true.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: And we do ask musicians wo
are coming to bring their bow. Not just to add another
layer to the performance. But those are the
bows that were given with the Stradivarius
instruments n a gift of 1935. And we just keep them
now for study purposes and not really for concert use. They’re very fragile
and very rare. In the Tourte and
Peccatte as well but. Is there any other questions? [ Background Noise ]>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: No? Okay. One more. Okay.>>So, you have any comments
about the [inaudible] compared to each other or inspired?>>Renaud Capucon: Well yeah. It’s – I love this program
because it’s a – how can I say? A journey in France somehow. And perhaps I’m the
French violinist who played the least
French music for long time. I played so much better
in Mozart, Shubert, Brahms [inaudible] in Berlin. And I was really –
I loved French music but there was almost only
playing German music. And since two or three years,
since I got 40 perhaps. I don’t know why. But I thought I should
play more French music just because it’s fantastic. And not because I’m among
these people who think that because we are French,
we play better French music. Because you are German
you play – you know this is
absolutely wrong. But there is something in
the voice, in the language. And I’m sure the fact
that we speak French and that we are born
in France we have a way to play French music which is
somehow more natural as I’m sure if you American would
play American music. There is somethings
that which you know when you hear American violinist
playing Bernstein serenade it is natural, you know? And I believe that it’s
not that we play better or whoever played better
but there is a kind of taste which is interesting to know. And I love to play this
program WC with so many colors and Howells was also a
different way of seeing. Then it’s Monet, Monet and
it’s like if you would go in the museum and
see a retrospective of French paintings. So, I think it’s
very interesting. And the Franc sonata
so much telling about [inaudible] all this time. And I think it would
be a nice journey to France I hope you’ll enjoy.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
And you’re going to come back in the spring and
do the Sibelius with the National Symphony?>>Renaud Capucon: Yeah, yeah. I will play with the
National Symphony in May. And with Ed Garner, I think. And we’ll play Sibelius. So, I’m looking forward.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford: Well
I also hope you come back here, and we do [inaudible].>>Renaud Capucon:
It was pleasure.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Together with these instruments. They’ll stay here. You just come back her. And we’ll.>>Renaud Capucon: I know. Don’t worry.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Yeah, yeah okay. That was a long conversation
today. Any more questions? There’s one back there.>>I don’t know if I missed
this but since you’re talking about the program could you say
a word about the Ravel and Jazz and the Blues movement? What it’s like to play that.>>Renaud Capucon:
Oh, yeah, yeah. Of course – I didn’t –
I’m not a musicologist so I didn’t describe
every movement. But in the Howells sonata
there’s three movements. In the second movement
is a blues. And you’ll see its
absolutely delicious piece. I have to say about the
Howells sonatas I had fantastic composer, French composer
Yan Maresz did for me to years ago an orchestration. So, I play this Howells
sonata with orchestra. He made a fantastic
orchestration. You can find it on
YouTube or something. It just – listen
to it just for – because it becomes
another piece. And the last movement
then it becomes like Howells piano concerto. It becomes really
something which yeah. And it becomes kind of
[inaudible] concerto with the blues and is a lot
of fun also with orchestra because you know all these
descending of winds and things. But clearly when
I play this blues and I will have the
same feeling tonight. I always image myself
in a bar somewhere. And just at 2:00 in the
morning which I really never do. But just I – I image when
I’m in – playing to Howells.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Anybody else? Okay. Great.>>Renaud Capucon:
I think I will.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
Thank you.>>Renaud Capucon: Warm up. Thank you very much.>>Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford:
[inaudible] warm up. Thank you.>>Renaud Capucon:
Thanks to you. [ Applause ]

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