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Gabriela Montero

Speaking Soundly

Jul 11 2023 • 26 mins

Grammy nominated Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Montero is celebrated for her exceptional musicality and her ability to improvise complex pieces on themes suggested by her audiences at live performances. The best-selling recording artist, Latin Grammy Award winner, and human rights activist discusses recording at Abbey Road Studios, seeing her album poster-size Tower Records near Lincoln Center, and what she discovered about her brain when she performs spontaneously. Gabriela reminisces about learning to play the piano at eight-months old, performing Haydn D Major at age nine, her desire to leave the piano behind in her early thirties, and her ultimate return to the instrument. She shares with David how her music influences her political activism and what it meant to her to perform with Itzhak Perlman, Yo-Yo Ma, and Anthony McGill at the inauguration of President Barack Obama.

Thanks to our good friends at Ravinia for helping to make this interview possible. Get your tickets here to see Gabriela Montero perform live at Ravinia on July 21st.

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As discussed in the interview, you can see Gabriela perform Haydn D Major at age nine here.

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The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.

Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman.

This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.

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