For fuck’s sake Norman

Norman Lebrecht has posted a few sentences about pianist Yuja Wang’s recent performance of Prokofiev 5 with the National Symphony Orchestra.

He gleefully includes a description of what the pianist was wearing on stage from one of his ‘readers’. I’m not going to repeat it here. You can read it (if you absolutely must) in the screen-grab above.

In an attempt to justify the editorial of the post, Norman includes a link to a ‘proper’ reviewer – Anne Midgett at the Washington Post. But he stops the quote mid-way through Anne’s paragraph.

The effect? Lebrecht reinforced the barely hidden sexism by suggesting that a professional critic thinks and feels the same way Norman and his ‘reader’ does about the pianist. And that is reflected in the contemptible comments posted below.

Anne’s full quote about the effect of Yuja Wang’s outfit is as follows:

“The piano soloist was Yuja Wang, a brilliant artist who is fond of provoking conservative audiences with skimpy concert attire, and who on Thursday appeared to have forgotten her dress altogether and looked as if she were playing in her underwear. The bourgeoisie refused to be “épater-ed,” instead rising to its feet at her masterful, fluid playing in an unusual piece (it was the NSO’s first performance of it) that is itself rather exuberant and naughty.”

In other words – as far as the reviewer was concerned – no-one batted an eyelid because they were focusing on the music.

For fuck’s sake.


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