Music: Unsnobby At The Keys

Stephen Hough has a MacArthur grant and lots of new classical CDs. But don't call him an intellectual

It's been a down-and-up season for Stephen Hough. First, his high-profile appearance at Lincoln Center's Rachmaninoff Revisited festival in New York City, where he was scheduled to play the Russian composer's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, was scratched on account of Sept. 11. Just six weeks later, though, the pianist got a jaw-dropping phone call that wiped out all the disappointment and then some. He learned he had been tapped for a coveted MacArthur Fellowship, the $500,000 "genius grant" awarded for brilliance above and beyond the call of duty, a prize never before given to a classical performer. (Previous arts...

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