PRINCETON - The Golandsky Institute's annual International Piano Festival, in its concert with the New Jersey Symphony, demonstrated that its methods, which promote injury-free pianism, don't produce conformity.
It's a valid concern. Sharp-eared music lovers can often identify students of a particular teacher without knowing the player's resumé.
But on Thursday at Richardson Auditorium, Golandsky mainstays Ilya Itin and Sean Duggan showed little family resemblance when Itin performed Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 12 (K. 414) and Duggan played Bach's Harpsichord Concerto No. 2 (BWV 1053). Clearly, the institute's Taubman Approach releases individuality instead of mediating it.
As a career pianist, Itin plays with a long-honed precision and nuance that allowed each of Mozart's phrases to question, answer, and expound on what comes before and after. Much of his expressive imperative was about revealing clarity at every turn, giving a sort of big-picture panorama, showing his listeners what the possibilities are and what he selected from them.