Eduard Kunz has been playing the piano since the age of five. At ten, he was on stage with the Soviet Union’s Omsk Philharmonic Orchestra. Not too long ago, BBC Music Magazine named him one of the world’s best ten young pianists. Now, he’s 35 years old and rarely finds the time to relax between the dozens of concerts he performs around the world. Regardless of whether he’s playing in New York, Sankt Petersburg or Bistrița, Kunz sits down at his piano and brings together those in front of him, so that they all speak the same language. That of the music people used to listen to 100, 200 or 300 years ago, a music Kunz manages to make his own. When he becomes one with the piano, it appears as if it is merely a natural extension, and his gestures appear to be so light, that you can’t even fathom the fact that behind them lie tens of thousands of practice hours.
Kunz was born in Omsk, Siberia – a city whose music is “the sound of the snow crunching under your feet”. He studied in Moscow – “the sound of cars. Millions and millions of cars riding in the rain, on 8 or 12-lane roads” – and in London – “the sound of a pub. People chatting and clinking glasses. People laughing and people arguing”. But for a few years now, home is Bucharest – “leaves rustling”. On the break before a tour, we met for an afternoon chat in Bucharest, who, for me, is the sound of honking cars going over leaves. I tried to find out what about what it means to be a top pianist, how you can make a living from classical music, and what happens to our brains when we listen to Piano Sonata No. 21 by Beethoven.
Video: Veioza Studio