Lola Astanova answers questions about practicing and playing the piano on her YouTube channel at AskLola. She says she’s happy that her viewers are able to look beyond the “stuffy and snooty image that the classical musical world projects.” Here she plays her virtuoso version of Madonna’s “Music.” Not stuffy at all.
What does the classical music world need? According to Astanova…
In my opinion, the industry needs to loosen up quite a bit. Traditional classical managers need to take a step back and allow the artists to breathe and take chances. They should also come to terms with the fact that the world today is a very different place than it was 50 and even 10 years ago. That’s first. Then, I believe it is time for classical musicians to finally say out loud that we are in the entertainment business. Intellectual, elegant, thought provoking, but entertainment. That means that classical performers must aspire to go beyond hitting the right notes and beyond academia. Classical music is not a museum piece, but a performing art that lives only through the artist and the audience. So each concert must be a love affair, not a funeral.
I happen to agree. If Gen Z is going to continue the classical piano tradition, pianists and teachers could learn a lesson or two from Lola Astanova…her use of YouTube, her composing, and her fearlessness.