Peter Ostwald, who died shortly after completing this sensitive analysis of the legendary Canadian pianist Glenn Gould (1932-82), is one of those rare biographers equally qualified to assess his subject's artistry and psychology. Founder of the Health Program for Performing Artists, the psychiatrist-author was also Gould's friend for 20 years. Lucid prose captures Gould's formidable, unconventional virtuosity and unmasks a deeply troubled man who was uncomfortable with audiences, fearful of human contact, and able to maintain relationships only when he was in complete control. The eccentricities and the genius, as Ostwald persuasively demonstrates, were inextricably intertwined. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The late writer, psychiatrist, and musician Ostwald concluded his series of performer biographies (e.g., Vaslav Nijinsky: A Leap into Madness, LJ 11/1/90) with this portrait of Canadian pianist Glenn Gould. Ostwald wrote from the unusual perspective of someone who was a friend of the reclusive Gould. Readers excited by this insider viewpoint may be somewhat disappointed as Ostwald's personal reminiscences taper off after his opening chapter. Still, Ostwald does present the medical aspects of Gould's life to a degree not seen in earlier biographies. And though Gould remains something of an enigma, his talent, quirkiness, and innovative musicianship emerge. Since his death in 1982, Gould has remained an influential and somewhat controversial pianist, owing in part to a recorded legacy that remains very much alive. This new biography should help maintain interest in Gould. A valuable addition for larger music collections.?James E. Ross, WLN, Seattle
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Although the book was posthumously published by Peter Otswald's estate, I thank him for his 1998 writing on collections from the life and idiosyncrasies of his erstwhile (in life... Read morePublished on July 15, 2013 by Elizabeth Wallace
If you want a great biography of ever-fascinating Glenn Gould, I'd recommend first seeing the 1985 film documentary, "Glenn Gould: A Portrait", and if you want to go deeper, Otto... Read morePublished on March 18, 2012 by johnny Rotten
Ostwald obviously was upset that Gould turned away from him. This biography is nothing but a shrinks' analysis after being cast aside and feeling hurt. Read morePublished on November 21, 2011 by D. Holt
I'm a Gould fan, but I'm perfectly willing to admit that Gould was at times childish and at times nutty. Read morePublished on August 2, 2009 by Daniel Pi
In this book, the author, Peter Ostwald, sometimes enjoyed playing classical music as an amateur musician but, perhaps more importantly, he was also a psychiatrist. Read morePublished on May 25, 2008 by Patrick W. Crabtree
With a book titled "The Ecstasy and Tragedy of Genius" written by a psychologist/friend of the subject, I was expecting to learn a great deal about the psychology behind Glenn... Read morePublished on March 31, 2008 by C. Wright
My difficulty with books on Glenn Gould is that there always seems to be two extremes so to speak: he was, to put it in colloquial parlance, either a "flake" ==or== that virtually... Read morePublished on May 12, 2007 by Anthony J. Lomenzo
As a person who suffers from hypochondria, I read this book mostly out of interest in the struggles of a world-class hypochondriac. Read morePublished on April 24, 2006 by Grace Heckenberg
Ostwald has done an excellent job of ferreting out the details of an unusual life and making it readable, regardless of the readers experience in music and/or medicine. Read morePublished on December 30, 2003 by Paul T. Dube', MD