I met Elliott Carter for the first and the last time in New York on February 22, 2012. It was at my All Carter Recital at Weill Recital Hall. I performed an All Carter Program including the Piano Sonata, Night Fantasies, Two Diversions, and Caténaires for solo piano. It was a complete surprise for me that a 103 year old composer should come and sit in the audience. I had organized 2 other All-Elliott Carter concerts in Tokyo in the spring of 2011, which included his chamber music pieces with piano. However, unfortunately they were canceled because of the devastating earthquake that hit us on March 11th. When they were rescheduled in the fall, they were canceled again, because of my injury.
I felt as though it was my mission to realize the recital in New York as scheduled even though, I had not completely recovered from the injury.
The winter of 2012 in New York was unusually warm. The day of the recital was as warm as 65 degrees, and people were out in the streets with T-shirts and short pants. Mr. Carter was also dressed rather lightly in a white shirt and wool jacket. He stood up in the audience with a bright smile to applaud me, and greeted the audience. I could not prevent myself from hopping down from the stage to go greet him and show my affection to the great composer.
I have been naturally gravitating towards his luminous music, and have affectionately performed his piano pieces for the last 8 years in Europe and Japan. When I finally went to New York to perform his music, the great composer came to the concert. There is no further addition to this synopsis.
Yet many events and coincidences conspired to make this happen, and when it did, it was just so simple, just like his music.