Olga Kern, Van Cliburn Competition Gold Medal Winner Prefers Vinyl!

After enjoying a dazzling performance of Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto #3 by Olga Kern and The Colorado Symphony conducted by James Judd I attended a post concern Q&A with Kern and conductor Judd followed by a back stage meet and greet thanks to Wilson Audio Specialties' Peter McGrath who is friends with Judd and has recorded many of Judd's conducting performances as well as some starring Kern.

Her performance was splendid, the orchestra's playing was equally so with the balance achieved by conductor Judd stunning. The Steinway, sitting atop a metal stand on rubber wheels was a bit "tinkly" sounding but not Ms. Kern's fault. She wore a dazzling dress that only added to the visual impact of this gorgeous woman, who looked ever bit as ravishing close up as she did from my mid-hall seat (the dress in the photo was not what she wore on stage).

I had to ask: "When you listen to recorded music do you prefer vinyl or CDs?" Without hesitation she answered "Vinyl. It sounds better." A perfect capper to a memorable evening! We invited her to the RMAF and she said she'd try to go Saturday afternoon.

It is absurd that this concert, to be repeated Saturday night was not promoted at the show. You can watch her 2001 Gold Medal winning performance here. Now 39, she's improved with age in every way.

firedog55's picture

You couldn't get another photo or fix up the eyes?

Michael Fremer's picture
Snapped those with iPhone. Best I could do under the circumstances.
Ortofan's picture

...cross-promotion, either way, between the concert and the audio show, based upon the sort of demo material you typically hear played in most rooms.
Years ago I attended a demo for Apogee speakers. At one point they put on a selection from a Verdi opera recording that I had brought with me. Although (the late) Jason Bloom seemed to enjoy it (and made a note of the album), the rest of the room was itching to return to the junk they'd been listening to so they could focus on the "detail" and "imaging" - instead of hearing some real music. Makes you wonder how many buyers of an Ortofon MC Anna know who Ms. Netrebko is, let alone have ever heard her sing.

Oksana's picture

Thanks for posting the performance. It's very difficult to understand why any high caliber musician wouldn't prefer the best possible sound when listening to music.

jazz and cocktails's picture
Michael Fremer's picture
That is a better picture most highly recommended but I'll leave up the one that's currently at the top of the page.
Oksana's picture

I like watching her play, that was cool!