Two astonishing online resources for fans and students of music.
First, the Thirteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition is happening right now in Fort Worth, Texas, and you can watch it all online, live and archived. They announced the semi-finalists last night; the only Canadian in competition, Ang Li, didn’t advance, but after watching the Russian Eduard Kunz play, I’m glad he did: his playing is beautiful.
Second, the legendary Smalls Jazz Club in New York City has been recording everything every musician has played there since September 2007. A very large fraction of the audio files are already online, with more to come. It’s hard to overstate how gloriously nutty this is. This is many hundreds of hours of live jazz, much of it by young musicians, who’ve long used Smalls as a training ground before moving onward. You can pretty much wander through the archives at random; for starters, here’s the wily veteran Italian pianist Dado Maroni.