It’s tough to follow a legend into the fray, but pianist Fabian Muller would know all about that. He was born and brought up in Bonn, Germany, a few meters from Beethoven’s birthplace. He’s also made his name as someone who can masterfully play the maestro’s music.
It comes naturally, he says in an interview with Gulf News tabloid!. “I grew up with his music and his tradition all around me and I cannot remember a time without being in contact with this special composer. But also I felt very close to this music when I became an adult because I can identify so much with his strong wish for a better world and for freedom and peace for every human being,” he says.
This weekend, Dubai is to play witness to Muller’s prowess. As prelude to the 250th year since Beethoven’s birth, which will be celebrated in 2020, Muller will perform the ‘Appassionata’ sonata on Saturday, November 30.
“The audience can expect an evening with two absolute masterpieces, two of the greatest and most important sonatas, which have ever been composed,” he says.
The first, of course, is Beethoven Sonata op. 57. And in addition to this, he will play Schubert Sonata No. 22 in Major D 959 and Brahms Intermezzi op. 117.
The butterflies are not dancing in Muller’s stomach though; he’s confident of the music he’s chosen. He says: “I feel very secure because the Steinway prize-winner concerts have very high standards on every aspect and they already invited me for a concert in the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg last year.”
Muller is an avid supporter of melody for young people. He is the pianist of the Ruhr Piano Festival’s project. He works with more than 300 children. When asked why song is important for young-ones, he explains: “Music develops the brain, the body and the heart, all at once. It is one of the most important things, it is so enjoyable and you learn a lot about yourself and the people around you. It is a part of being human to express yourself with music since the first steps of mankind.”
And it’s that very need to explain himself that leads him to solo outings.
“Playing chamber music is the heart of all music making. But still, I love to play solo as well, because I am able to express some very personal feelings, which I maybe couldn’t share in a group of people,” he explains.
It’s a need that’s served him well — he is off to prolifically share his views — through his notes. “I look forward to play the concert on Saturday with the Dubai Concert Committee at the One and Only Royal Mirage and have some busy weeks ahead of me, with concerts, CD recordings and a lot of travelling.”
It wouldn’t be unusual if someone in his place were a bit nervous, following in the steps of the greats. But he’s been serenaded by Moonlight Sonatas — a star has been born.
Don’t miss it!
Fabian Muller will perform at the One and Only Royal Mirage, Royal Ballroom, on November 30 from 8pm. Tickets to the show are Dh263.