In the fall of the year 2000, the pianist Martin Berkofsky was treated at Cancer Treatment Centers of America. He returned from his stay with a suitcase stuffed with rubber noses, monstrous green plastic gloves and other relics of his humor class and a renewed outlook on life; a heightened sensitivity to others and the conviction that caring works, and works at every level. He also returned with a commitment to help other cancer patients. Helping A.I.H.C. is a natural. The founder of the Cristofori Foundation, he too seeks to relieve persons of financial distress. With solo performances, ensemble concerts, and the sales of compact discs such as this, he has helped the homeless, a neighbor pay for a heart transplant, Albanian refugees at the height of their crisis, a blind girl in Macedonia trying to educate herself.
CRISTOFORI FOUNDATION LINKS
All of the proceeds from this recording will benefit Assistance in Health Care, in its mission to give financial aid to cancer patients and their families who face unexpected difficulties which arise with extended medical care.
Mr. Berkofsky has chosen to play four works of Franz Liszt, the pianist-composer-abbe for whom Mr. Berkofsky has felt an affinity since childhood. What first captivated him as even a young pianist was Liszt's combination of intellect, emotion, and spirituality. "Liszt wrote for the universe," he says. Liszt's work personifies what Berkofsky considers the ultimate meaning and purpose of art: "Great music inspires one to a higher purpose because it itself is inspired from a higher purpose and vision." A review from one of Berkofsky's many Liszt performances commented that Berkofsky gave "such an expressive and nuanced performance that he held the audience spellbound to the end of the concert. We did not know at which to wonder first: the total concentration, the expressive performance, the mature individuality, the brilliant pianistic technique, or the intimate experience of the music for which, that evening, Berkofsky lived." Says Berkofsky simply, "The job of a musician is to bring beauty and inspiration to others and to do this through the most honest and humble search to find those same qualities within ourselves. How fortunate we are to be part of this life, creating beauty, giving it to others, dedicating our efforts to create a more beautiful world."
CF-885, MARTIN BERKOFSKY PLAYS FRANZ LISZT May Be Ordered Directly From: ASSISTANCE IN HEALTH CARE: Susan Magill, 918-496-5108.