[This excerpt appeared in The New York Times
, Sunday 11th March 1917.
It appeared also in Huneker's book Unicorns
, Scribner's, New York, September 1917, pages 179-180,
in a chapter entitled "The Grand Manner in Pianoforte Playing".
This web version is dated 11 April 2008, revised 10 June 2008.
The Grand Manner Has Vanished from Pianists
by James Gibbons Huneker
. . .
In the same school as Joseffy is the
capricious de Pachmann; with Joseffy
I sat at the first recital of this extraordinary
Russian in Chickering Hall.
(1890?) . Joseffy, with his accustomed
generosity of spirit—he was the most
sympathetic and human of great
virtuosi—at once recognized the artistic worth of
Vladimir de Pachmann. This last
representative of a school that included the
names of Hummel, Cramer, Field, Thalberg,
Chopin, the little De Pachmann
(he was bearded like a pirate)
captivated us. It was all miniature,
without passion or pathos or the grand
manner, but in its genre his playing
was perfection: the polished perfection
of an intricately carved ivory ornament.
De Pachmann played certain sides of
Chopin incomparably. In a small hall,
sitting on a chair that precisely suited
his fidgety spirit, then, if in the mood,
a recital by him was something unforgettable.
. . .