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Toronto-based Euromaidan fascist cult censors web's favorite pianist

In the morning, several e-mails that I received have shocked me.

The pieces played by Valentina Lisitsa, a Kiev-born pianist often nicknamed "web's favorite pianist", have been dropped by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra from a planned concert for an insane reason: because her tweets were critical of the current government in the city where she was born!

She was told the reason of her silencing and offered the full compensation for her concert if she won't reveal the political motivation behind the censorship to the world. Thankfully, she can't be bribed so easily so we have learned what happened. The corrupt organizers replaced her with a more politically convenient Stewart Goodyear. See Google News.

Like your humble correspondent, she was born in 1973 and in a communist country – in Kiev, USSR. She is ethnically half-Russian, half-Polish. At the age of three, she began to play the piano. She wanted to become a champion in chess but at the end, she did receive the proper training and became a piano player.

Twenty years ago, she and her future husband moved to the U.S. to advance their piano careers. At some moment, she considered becoming a government worker in D.C. But in 2007, she posted her first YouTube video. Her online fame exploded when she posted her Chopin etudes for free. Those pieces made it to the #1 in Amazon's classical music section, too.

This YouTube video of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata has been played more than 9 million times; the total number of views on her YouTube channel is about 50 million. I was also trained as a piano player and was among the best kids, regionally, but it seems almost obvious to me that I could have never played compositions such as this "true professional" at the same speed. I think that this sonata is a great technical test for a pianist – Beethoven probably wrote it so that the pianists play it at an insane speed.

Just to be sure, if you watch her Für Elise (4.6 million views), something I could play, you may see her sensitive qualities, too. Liszt's Totentanz (2 million views) is fast and cool, too.

Her Tweets (the feed's name is NedoUkraïnka, pretty witty: it's a "not yet completed/full-fledged Ukrainian", meaning "subhuman" from an Ukrainian official viewpoint) relevant for the "ban" seem to convey good points although I would say that nothing is original enough to be controversial. I would almost certainly agree with more than 95% of the content.

Go Novorossiya.

Kiev kills scores of civilians, NATO enables murderers… Russia sent 1,000 men to Ukraine? Does it make sense? Why not send 100 times more and finish it in 3 days?…
Amen to that.

She made fun of the first American who committed suicide by going to fight on Yatsenyuk's side, she often emphasized how corrupt the Western media are when they describe the Ukranian civil war. And there were unflattering cartoons reflecting the current lousy state of the Ukrainian nation. Whether such tough cartoon humor is good or bad depends on one's taste and mood and I have mixed feelings myself but this humor doesn't differ from the satire posted about many other political topics.

Her skills were inconvenient for the organized ethnic Ukrainian savages. These primitive mobs obviously control the cultural life in cities like Toronto so her part of the concert was censored. The ban was "rationalized" by the usual politically correct propaganda about "deeply offensive" online content posted by Lisitsa. What is actually deeply offensive is that brainwashed, totalitarian, almost worthless scum decides about the fate of best pianists' concerts – by a pianist who is good both in music and politics – according to political criteria.

What I find so troubling is that this censorship – which was possible in a seemingly Western country named Canada – apparently surpasses what I remember from the times of communism. They did lots of bad things but we were exposed to a reasonable amount of Western culture and I don't remember a concert that was canceled because a Western musician would point out that the communists suck.

This is classical music. You just shouldn't use it to politically manipulate masses, and even the communists respect this basic level of decency. In fact, I think that we may go further. Even Adolf Hitler allowed black and other inconvenient athletes to compete at the 1936 Olympic Games – and earn gold medals.

The exact reason why her music is so inconvenient for the Euromaidan people and those who lick their rectums (and act as their puppet masters, too) is self-evident. Music fans could see that the skillful if not ingenious people tend to side with Novorussia, not with the Euromaidan. But you know, the educated people know it, anyway. The good musicians born in Ukraine are ethnic Russians. The (now destroyed) airport in Donetsk was named after Sergei Prokofiev who was born in the region but who was ethnic Russian. I think that you won't find an ethnic Ukrainian counterpart of him. Or counterparts of Mussorgsky, Tchaikovsky, and Rachmaninoff. Rimsky-Korsakov, Glazunov, Borodin, Balakirev... you've gotten my point, haven't you?

When it comes to Eastern Slavic classical music (and many other fields of the human activity), it is the ethnic Russians – plus the Russian Jews – who are superior. Fascist propaganda may censor pro-Russian musicians and try to do everything to distort the truth. But the truth won't really change.

As long as totally elementary political freedoms are preserved, Ms Lisitsa has the indisputable right to oppose the post-coup arrangement in Ukraine – like about 1/2 of the people whose opinions about the issue matter. Regardless of her political opinions, she is a great interpreter – and those who suggest that her inconvenient tweets "overshadowed" her music only prove their dishonesty. And the contracts shouldn't be violated. The people behind this shameful ban should be ashamed, spat upon, and they should be removed from the decision making on the Earth, too. The world is too small for cultural people and those who do their best to harm the cultural people in order to elevate their primitive fascist values and propaganda.

Read her touching letter (original: her Facebook) where she explains the "double life" (celebrity / heartbroken mother) life she was living in the recent year; her nickname; points out that she also speaks Ukrainian, better than Poroshenko does; and details about the censorship, among other things.

Daniel McAdams (Ron Paul Institute) has some more details about what happened before this ban in his text "Toronto Symphony Orchestra Goes Full Stalin".

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snail feedback (24) :

reader ValFan said...

I read the blog for the physics content but let me comment just once here. It is a bit off-topic but since you've mentioned it - while Val has great technical abilities she is an artist, not a robot that plays very fast (unlike many other 'famous' pianists, although I don't exclude future robots). Her interpretations (as you wrote), being able to 'make music' out of very technical pieces, are the things that make her special and an outstanding artist. Of course there are cases where some form of censorship might be in order (I don't think a Nazi singer should sing in Israel or a singer that sings about shooting gay people should sing in a civilized society) but this is not the case. This is obviously a stupid decision made in a very non democratic way in a place that pretends to be free.

reader Eclectikus said...

In the bright side, surely this will open many eyes between the Western herd and will help to dissolve the manichean vision of war in Ukraine. That's something.

reader AlenLemone said...

Can't see why this is a surprise to anyone.
Canada has been supporting the Ukrainian Armed Forces, even though they know full well that those weapons they send are bound to kill civilians. They also know that the Ukrainian forces are mostly Neo-Nazi, but simply don't care.

Canada isn't just America's bitch. It is ruled by an idiot PM who thinks very highly of himself...though even calling him "mediocre" would be paying him a compliment.
This is simply another embarrassment for the Canadians.
As was detaining/searching of the Evo Morales' plane for the French (though, to their credit - they later apologized).

Another day of being one of America's bitches.
There's plenty more of this to come.

reader Luboš Motl said...

Thanks for mentioning the Nazis in the UAF. Just yesterday, Dmitry Yarosh, the boss of the Right Sector,


was named an official adviser of the UAF top general, and the Right Sector fighters themselves will join the army under their Yarosh leadership, an agreement determined.

reader BobSykes said...

I never understood what the problem was. But whenever my students had to do logs on a test, the error rate went up significantly. There is something not obvious about manipulating logs.

And then, of course, the confusion between bases adds to the problem. Many years ago in Columbus, some radiology tech confused a base 10 exponent with a base e exponent and gave some patients too much radiation.

reader Smoking Frog said...

It's hard to believe that you understood all that at the age of 6. I'm not suggesting that you're lying, but of course it is a possibility.

I was about 10 when I found an old 1st-year algebra book in my parents' bookcase and taught some of it to myself, including logarithms, but only the very basics of them.

The TV show was in German? How did you know German at that age?

reader TomVonk said...

God knows that I have no sympathy for the Russians of 1917, 1956 or 1968. And God knows that the farther I am from them, the safer I feel.
But this is ridiculous.
Like with ISIS and their unprecedented destruction of cultural treasures that survived wars, empires and dictators during 3 000 years, I can't remember a single case in human history where top interpreters of classical music would have been persecuted or censored.
Even if our history contains quite a lot of little recommendable people - among others Mao, Stalin, Hitler and half of the Roman emperors, they didn't go sofar.
Just on a smaller scale but in exactly the same spirit, the RATP (Paris Subway Company) forbade and made remove advertisement in the Subway stations for a charity concert because it contained the sentence "To help middle east christians".
This sentence offended the company's sense of "religious neutrality" or so they said.
In the meantime advertisement for halal food with the mention "Good ramadan" was allowed to stay .....

reader mozartian said...

He basically invented constant e and logarithms by himself and was a head of his time. The most gifted mathematicians haven't figured them out before him. I think when it comes to mathematics 3 SD is usually absolutely nothing. Competition in that area is fierce and has been for a long time. Little chance of leaving ones mark in the history with 3 SD intelligence.
All those "weird" habits mean very little. Many ancient geniuses had equally "stupid" conceptions about the world. They were nonetheless intellectual giants of their time.

reader metamars said...

Here's an idea, which begs your outspoken commentary. Russia can demand that Germany condemn Ukraine's Nazi employment program, or else they replace their current ambassador to Germany with a Heil Hitler saluting Nazi (sincere or acting, it matters not). Can you just picture Ambassodor Hitlerokanov (to make up an appropriate name) Heil Hitlering Angela Merkel!!!???

That should definitely get the attention of both the German public, as well as the German government. And drive point the home that abiding Nazis is actually NOT ok.

IMNSO, it will also make Merkel's face look like it did when GW Bush goosed her, but to the nth degree, where n is at least 3.0.

reader Luboš Motl said...

I understood enough to rediscover it.

But like the comment someone said about a blackboard discussion between Einstein and Levi-Civitta:

The two men were discussing in a language that both of them considered to be English. But the true channel of communication were the equations written on the blackboard. ;-)

reader rangitoto said...

Srinivasa Ramanujan should be on the list as far as raw talent goes.

reader Luboš Motl said...

And very high on the list. ;-)

reader Smoking Frog said...

I'm not sure why, but I'm less skeptical when someone says he rediscovered something than when he only says he learned it.

The language story reminds me of Edward Teller's saying that he didn't know he spoke English with a thick Hungarian accent until he heard a recording of himself.

reader Smoking Frog said...

I think it's very likely that 3 SD is not enough for a person to become a top-rank mathematician, but I don't think Napier had to be brilliant to discover logarithms. He was interested in methods of calculation, and he probably spent endless hours "doodling" on it. It's not hard to imagine that logarithms could finally occur to someone like, even if he wasn't brilliant.

reader Smoking Frog said...

Yes, then, you're probably right. As to the radiology story, ugh, that's awful.

reader Smoking Frog said...

As to when logarithms appeared in the curriculum when I was young, I've had second thoughts, and now I think it was no later than Algebra I, and just maybe, earlier, in middle school.

reader Ann said...

Censoring classical pianists for expressing their opinions? Really, Canada? #fail

reader davideisenstadt said...

"If i see further than others, it is only because I am surrounded by midgets."

reader Steve Baker said...

Wow, never can predict the side your going to take!

reader john said...

Maybe. But I am not so sure because it appears that Ramanujan has an unusual talent for number theory. I am not sure he had equivalent talents for other subjects. I am not sure of course.

reader john said...

I think Ramanujan was extremely talented in number theory but I don't know he was equally talented in other subjects. Some people has extraordinary intuition for one subject but not equally talented for others. For example, Einstein or Elie Cartan can be given as examples. I tried to choose people whom I think wasn't talented in a particular subject but was just simply smart. I don't know about Ramanujan, but of course he was extremely smart.

reader cynholt said...

The US and its Anglo brethren have always resorted to divide and conquer to deal with their enemies.

They were able to push around Africans, Arabs, Latinos, etc with impunity. They were even able to push around the Chinese and Russia. But now that the gig is up and Russia and China see the game, I don’t think they will be able to push them around anymore.

reader Gordon said...

Don't condemn ALL of Canada. Toronto is the centre of political correctness. She is playing elsewhere where she is not cancelled, but, of course, the MSM is encouraging people to demonize her---saying in her tweets that she called ethnic Ukranians subhuman or that her nick implies that---that is a LIE. These people are either morons or cannot understand sarcasm. Poroshenko called the Eastern Ukranian polulace (ie mostly ethnic Russian/Ukranians "subhuman". She just picked this up and ran with it.

reader Gordon said...

We should be able to shed Harper in the next election, but our choices to replace him aren't stellar. Justin Trudeau's father was able to stand up to the US, as was conservative John Diefenbaker (to be fair to the left and the right).