[Yuko's Leg Rehabilitation Diary - 13]
What else - I was considering about one thing: 'Koszalin audiences must be surprised when they suddenly see a pianist entering stage with poles.' - It's a very unusual and uncommon view/scene at all.
I talked to Koszalin Philharmonic director Robert Wasilewski and the concert moderator Andrzej Zborowski.
I've known Andrzej since I performed at Szymanowski Festival in Słupsk in 1997. I was surprised when first I met him, because he knew very well about what had happened to me during Chopin Competition in 1995, then how Polish media had reacted and helped me.
Since then I've been invited to Słupsk several times as a jury member of 'Polish Pianism Festival/Festiwal Pianistyki Polskiej - Estrada Młodych', in spite of not being Polish (I'm Japanese). I have worked there with prof.Andrzej Jasiński, Jan Popis, Józef Kański, Małgorzata Błoch-Wiśniewska and others. It has been a great honour for me. When I was there, Andrzej Zborowski always worked at the Festival as a moderator.
They've always been very kind and helpful. Director Robert Wasilewski understood me and Andrzej Zborowski promised to speak to the audiences about my leg situation and using poles, in order not to surprise the audiences.
And director Wasilewski said the tickets of our concert had already been sold out in March 2013 - eight months earlier.
I was surprised and felt it was really good I hadn't cancelled - I didn't make Koszalin audiences feel disappointed by my cancellation.
'Sold out in March?!'
And they asked me some questions:
'Don't you have a problem with your hands? Only legs?'
'Legs only. My hands - better and better.'
'Oh, you're lucky.'
'We heard the orchestra members talking that the Mozart Concerto was really good, tomorrow's our concert is going to be a success. Yuko, you are probably going to play something as an encore, aren't you?'
'Umm... to be honest, perhaps not.' I said. 'In my view, that's better. Of course I can, but... I walk slowly and carefully on the stage with poles, so if I played an encore, it would take too long. After Mozart KV488 - stunning Schubert Symphony is waiting for us. Better without my encore.'
'Even a very short piece... something Mozart...'
'Thank you very much for that, repertoire - no problem. I've already performed the complete cycle of Mozart Piano Sonatas - twice. But I think that better not to play my encore tomorrow. The next time when I come, when I'm completely healthy with my legs, let's do. I'd love to.'
photograph: Before the second rehearsal with the orchestra, in the morning on 28th November 2013