Thursday, March 8, 2007

Scamming with style

Geoff Edgers refers to this newly revealed "old" e-mail from Joyce Hatto's husband as "protesting too much." Well, yeah, but it also reveals what a pathologically charming character Mr. William Barrington-Coupe is. It's possible that he's just a pathetic guy who was desperately trying to cover up, but more and more he seems to me to be the type who loved the thrill of the hoax. I know he's now playing the tired and beaten-down role for sympathy, but I think it may be more a game to him than seems generally accepted. This newly revealed e-mail is laugh-out-loud funny; such grandiose prose, such excessive self-pity. In some ways, it's possibly one of the most successful pranks of all time, the kind that breezes along based on sheer brazen confidence and then, when revealed, makes everyone wonder how they could've been taken in. And, like the best of pranks, it hasn't really done any harm, especially if Ms. Hatto was part of it which I strongly suspect. I've already mentioned how the pianists whose recordings were stolen stand only to gain. What about those who bought the Hatto CDs? They had a great time listening to recordings that they loved. Isn't that why we buy recordings? I'd say they got their money's worth. I'm not saying that I advocate what Mr. B-C has done, but he sure did do it with style.

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