Over the last decade or so, I’ve been invited to some pretty memorable events by various brands, and Thursday night’s Ludwig event definitely ranks as one of the most enjoyable. I was lucky enough to score an invite to a piano recital by Ludwig’s only sponsored “athlete,” piano prodigy Otto Ehling. I’ve met Otto a couple of times and had the pleasure of hearing him play once or twice before, but this was different. First of all, the recital was held at the Ehling family home in the Hollywood Hills. If Otto’s playing wasn’t so incredible, the house his father George has built over the last 40 odd years (and is still working on) would have stolen all his thunder, because it’s just a mind-blowing house. Every square inch, outside and in, is a veritable work of art. George has painstakingly decorated the entire house with a stunning array of tiles and mosaics. People visit the house just to admire his work. When we arrived, George was nice enough to lead little tours around the grounds, sharing some of his past as a pro-wrestler, actor, and marathon runner. The sun was going down, but I managed to snap a few pics of the tiling. After everyone had raided the finger food and grabbed a drink, the recital began. I thought Otto’s playing was astounding. It was really nice to sit in a quiet room and listen to one talented musician play. He ran through an impressive range of works, all from memory, starting with some Debussy, then some rolling George Gershwin, followed by virtuosic selections from Rachmaninoff’s “Second Concerto,” then Franz Liszt’s “Mephisto Waltz”, and he wrapped it all up with Thelonious Monk’s famous “Monk’s Dream.” I sincerely wish you could have been there to see and hear it for yourself. Once the recital started I went into listening mode and didn’t take too many photos. It didn’t seem like the appropriate time for too much snapping, flashing, clicking, and beeping anyway.
Just like in the photo above, you literally couldn’t see Otto’s fingers – they were just a blur over the keys. For some better photos and more info on the Ehling home, check out Willard from Ludwig’s blog post, and MR44 from Foreign Family took some photos at the after party which was at the 722 Showroom on Figueroa. That was lots of fun too. I spent most of the time there comparing notes with Cody from Grn/Disco Vietnam, about the finer points of working for small businesses in this corner of the clothing game.