Fritz Kreisler Explains Difference of Successful Violinist from Great Artist
"There is a great difference between being a great artist and a successful concertizing artist," said Fritz Kreisler, world famous violin maestro yesterday afternoon.
"I once remarked to a critic that if I were to name the four or five violinists whom I considered the greatest artists, he wouldn't recognize the names of more than one or two of them.
"These artists, it happens, can play beautifully in a room, but still they have not achieved fame," he stated.
Advices Against Own Career
Kreisler, who opens the Boston recital season at Symphony Hall next Wednesday evening, said that he would not advise a young man to set out on a career such as he has had. He does not think the compensations of fame are worth all the demands it imposes.
His own career, he remarked, which has placed him at the top of all living violinists, has been worth while "only because of the satisfaction it has given me as an artist."
Must Deliver Best
"The man who appears before the public has to be able to deliver the best he has at all times. If he has been shaken up in an automobile accident, if he has just recovered from a hard cold, if he is fatigued from a long journey--these things must not be allowed to affect his performance. He is expected to be at the top of his form, continuously, no matter what happens--if he is to achieve that precious thing called fame.
"There is another element. The concertizing artist must be able to electrify his audience. You have heard orators whose arguments were completely logical but who were not convincing. Something vital was missing. The man who plays before the public must have that something--that some conductors have, of charging with the magnetism of their will not only the audience but the men of the orchestra."
"The artist who hasn't the constitution to stand up under severe treatment such as having funny pictures of himself in the newspapers, being required to perform his best at a moment's notice, and dall the rest--will fail, even if he has a persuasive personal power. He is like someone who has a fortune on the moon. It is there, but he cannot utilize it."