But what if we haven't really heard it? What if the performance was lackluster, but not the music itself? Are we willing to give it a second chance?
Sometimes I tune in the radio at random, just to test my capacity to pay attention objectively. Often I am surprised by what I hear. Wow! That's interesting playing! I wonder who it is? When it turns out to be an artist whose work I have admired in the past it confirms my initial impression.
Sometimes I chance to hear the announcement of what is about to be played: that is a real test. I recall once hearing that it was to be Schubert's "Death and the Maiden" string quartet. Yikes, I thought. Anything but that! But, instead of turning the dial I gave it a try. It took no more than the first two bars to proves that this was an extraordinary ensemble. I never heard the piece played like that and it firmly fixed the Balcea quartet in my universe among the best in the business.