Hypothetical question here - but there are some really incredible piano recordings from the era before sound recording really advanced.
Let’s say a pianist could technically match a golden age legend - and let’s say he could study a recording so thoroughly that he could recreate an almost identical interpretation with his fingers - and then subsequently record it using crystal clear modern technology or perform it live for you…
Would you have ANY interest in hearing it? Would it be worthwhile at all?
Incidentally… somewhat relating to the topic, according to ARRAU, pianists before WW1 were all about finding and bringing out the “true intentions” of the composer. He says it was only after WW1 this artistic & individualistic cult began which was to dominate over the coming decades.
I don’t know if he had the right idea or not - Arrau was still in his early teens during WW1 - but it does make sense to me if it was true. These things always go in waves, I don’t believe for a second you’ll learn anything at all about how Chopin played in 1840 by listening to Friedman in 1910. I mean just as you won’t learn anything about how Friedman sounded in 1910 by listening to Zimerman in 1980.