What is Classical Music

The word ‘classical ’music conjures for many a reference to any music that is old and not in our modern contemporary society. More likely, most will regard ‘classical’ music under a very broad period from Bach’s time including Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff or Debussy regardless of the history period of Western Art music which... Continue Reading →

Composers at the Keyboard

After Franz List , there were not many great composers. Mozart, Chopin and Beethoven as great as they were as pianists, there were also great composers. Johann Brahms was trained as a pianist in his youth, but he did not practice enough to keep his fingers loose. Critics said he lacked the finishing touch, was... Continue Reading →

Ladies’ Pianists

9 Year Old Teresa Carreño Teresa Carreño, had an overpowering personality, overpowering talent, physical strength, and technique. Besides that, she was one of the most beautiful women of her time. In 1872, she was on a tour of England with James Henry Mapleson, the impresario, as a piano soloist with his opera company. Mapleson persuaded... Continue Reading →

Other Pianists Post-Leschetizky

Even though Liszt and Leschetizky dominated the teaching during the latter half of the nineteenth century, this did not mean other teachers and other pianists were less important.  Vladimir de Pachmann belonged to no school and had no followers. His fame came from his shenanigans. Vladimir de Pachmann Pachmann would talk, mutter, grimace and lecture... Continue Reading →

Other Liszt Giants

Eugene d'Albert For all of the brilliant talents that flocked to Liszt’s last classes at Weimar, he was particularly proud of Eugene (or Eugen) d’Albert. Liszt called him ‘our young lion’ or ‘Albertus Magnus’ was another pet name that Liszt gave him. He was the son of a French father and German mother. In 1876... Continue Reading →

Paderewski – The Lucrative Pianist

Leschetizky’s most famous student was the most publicized, most admired, and most legendary pianist after Liszt. Ignaz Jan Paderewski has been the headliner for more than half a century and had made ten million US dollars.  He bought himself a house in Paris, a Château in Switzerland and indulged in expensive hobbies and habits. Rosenthal... Continue Reading →

Pianists of the Leschetizkians

Leschetizky died in 1915. Some of his famous students had careers extending past the middle of the twentieth century. Two of his earliest and most prominent male pupils were Mark Hambourg and Ossip Gabrilowitsch. Ossip Gabrilowitsch Mark Hambourg Hambourg was a Russian child prodigy who made his debut in Moscow at the age of nine... Continue Reading →

The Leschetizkianers

Leschetizksy In the first quarter of the twentieth century, was dominated by Liszt and Leschetizky. In comparison, Leschetizky has equal if not more impressive list of pupils. Paderewski who put Leschetizky successfully and securely on a map as a teacher. Paderewski was certainly not the best student of Leschetizky’s, but he is the most famous... Continue Reading →

The Elegant French

There was a boy from Paris who composed at six, played in the public at eight, and appeared at a formal debut at eleven playing a Mozart and Beethoven Piano Concerto, pieces by Handel and Kalkbrenner. He performed all these pieces from memory. He played Beethoven’s Thirty-Two Piano Sonatas. Soon the boy named Saint Saëns... Continue Reading →

The Iron Man

Could Beethoven have had a younger sibling or an illegitimate child? Anton Rubinstein was absolutely a Beethoven like figure, making the piano erupted volcanically, always played the wrong notes and broke the strings. The Russian with thick ugly hands and thickly padded fingers was recognized as the greatest pianist after Liszt. His pinky was a... Continue Reading →

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