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Itzhak Perlman talks 'Schindler's List,' Beethoven, keeping setlists fresh and more



It has been more than 50 years since Itzhak Perlman first made a splash as a 13-year-old on crutches (he had polio at age 4) playing a Mendelssohn violin concerto on the Ed Sullivan TV variety show. Today, he may be the world's most famous classical musician, and he continues to keep up a busy concert schedule, as well as teaching and doing some conducting.

What is the secret of his longevity?

"I think the secret is not a secret," he said in a recent interview. "What I try to do is I try to really just concentrate always on the music, not the way I played. The minute you concentrate on the music, then you have freshness all the time. The danger is to just play something you have played a long time, and just do it like you usually do. That's the kiss of death."

He cited Beethoven's No. 3 in E flat. "I don't know how many times I've played it. How do you maintain interest and not get bored? Go to the music. Every time I play it I hear something else."

Perlman, with pianist Rohan de Silva, performs at 8 p.m. Saturday at Morsani Hall of the Straz Center in Tampa. Tickets are $41-$75. Click here for details.

For more of John Fleming's interview with Itzhak Perlman, click here.

[Last modified: Tuesday, January 28, 2014 9:27pm]


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