Leon’s remarkable gifts as a musician, pianist, and teacher, were matched only by his charm, wit, intelligence and warmth as a human being. We invite members of the Peabody community to share their memories of Leon Fleisher.

Maître Monteux called him “the pianistic find of the century.”. 40 in G minor, K. 550 Leading orchestras with which she has performed include the Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra at Ravinia, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Gulbenkian Orchestra of Portugal, and the Orchestre National d’Ile de France. The name of Leon Fleisher has been synonymous with the Peabody Institute for more than six decades, his home since 1959. We have lost a giant.”. “As a member of the Peabody Conservatory faculty, Mr. Fleisher provided inspiration, guidance, and singular insight to hundreds of students over the years both in his piano studio and on the podium. For members of the Peabody family, it is a deeply personal loss. Two Hands is also the title of a short documentary on Fleisher by Nathaniel Kahn, which was nominated for an Academy Award for best short subject on January 23, 2007. WYPR's Midday host Tom Hall speaks with Anne Midgette, who collaborated with Leon on "My Nine Lives: A Musical Memoir," and alumni Lura Johnson and Michael Sheppard, both of whom studied with Leon Fleisher at Peabody. “With the passing of Leon Fleisher, the music world has lost one of its towering figures. Renowned pianist Leon Fleisher received an honorary degree from Johns Hopkins University during Commencement ceremonies the spring of 2015.

[1] In addition, he undertook conducting beginning in 1968, and became associate conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in 1973,[1] and music director of the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra. [1] He also studied with Maria Curcio and Karl Ulrich Schnabel. He was particularly well known for his interpretations of the piano concerti of Brahms and Beethoven, which he recorded with George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra. Our hearts go out to Leon’s wife, Katherine, and his family and loved ones. “With the passing of Leon Fleisher, the music world has lost one of its towering figures. The concerto is so constructed that it can be performed in one of three ways, with either piano part alone with reduced orchestra, or with both piano parts and the two reduced orchestras combined into a full orchestra. The name of Leon Fleisher has been synonymous with the Peabody Institute for more than six decades, his home since 1959. Jacobson Fleisher performs solo and duo piano concerts worldwide with her husband, pianist and conductor Leon Fleisher. He renewed his dedication to teaching at Peabody, where he has been the inspiration to hundreds of students since 1959.
His impact here is profound and lasting, and his absence will be felt keenly throughout the Peabody community. In the 1990s, Fleisher was able to ameliorate his focal dystonia symptoms after experimental botox injections to the point where he could play with both hands again. In 2004, he played the world premiere of Paul Hindemith's Klaviermusik, a piano concerto for the left hand completed in 1923, with the Berlin Philharmonic. He made his public debut at age eight. Franz Schubert: Symphony No. His pianist wife, Katherine Jacobson Fleisher, knew too that this was not the solution to her husband's problems. Emphasizing the importance of the music of our own time, she has commissioned works by contemporary women composers such as Dina Koston and Luna Pearl Woolf, and has performed chamber music of Dina Koston in Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall. His father, Isidor, was from Odessa; his mother, Bertha, from Chelm, a small town in Poland. With Dina Koston, he co-founded and co-directed the Theater Chamber Players in 1968–2003, which was the first resident chamber ensemble of the Smithsonian Institution and of the Pedagogy. Her Carnegie Hall debut with piano partner Leon Fleisher was praised by The New York Times for its “abundant musicality and refined technique”. Mr. Fleisher and his wife, the pianist Katherine Jacobson Fleisher, arriving at the Kennedy Center Honors gala in Washington in 2007. [1] In 1967, Fleisher commenced performing and recording the left-handed repertoire while searching for a cure for his condition. Fleisher was married three times, and is survived by his wife, Katherine, and five children from his first two marriages. He regained some control of his right hand then, and played and recorded two-hand repertoire. We were extremely fortunate to have had this man in our midst for so many years. Kennedy Center Chairman Stephen A. Schwarzman described him as "a consummate musician whose career is a moving testament to the life-affirming power of art. He is survived by his wife, Katherine Jacobson; children, Deborah Fleisher, Leah Fleisher (Michael Bamat), Dickie Fleisher (Kayo Ishimaru Fleisher), Paula Fleisher (Lucy Bernholz) and Julian Fleisher; grandchildren, Lena Compton and Harry Bernholz. Leon Fleisher (July 23, 1928 – August 2, 2020) was an American classical pianist, conductor and pedagogue. "[10], Fleisher's musical interests extended beyond the central German Classic-Romantic repertoire. [7] They also recorded Mozart's Piano Concerto No.
During nearly six decades at Peabody, pianist Leon Fleisher has launched countless influential careers – offering unparalleled wisdom and insight that transcends the act of music-making. She has also performed concerts in Japan, Germany, and France, as well as the United States. [1][2][3] His family was poor. 9 in C major, "The Great" The American composer William Bolcom composed his Concerto for Two Pianos, Left Hand for Fleisher and his close friend Gary Graffman, who has also suffered from debilitating problems with his right hand.



For members of the Peabody family, it is a deeply personal loss. It received its first performance in Baltimore in April 1996. Fleisher went on to international renown, becoming the first American to win the prestigious Queen Elisabeth of Belgium Competition in Brussels in 1952.

In celebration of his 90th year, he appeared in Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal as soloist with the Toronto Symphony and at the Gilmore Festival. Maurice Ravel: Introduction and Allegro

On August 2, 2020, Fred Bronstein, dean of the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, released the following statement, upon news of the death of Leon Fleisher. [1], In 2004, Fleisher played the world premiere of Paul Hindemith's Klaviermusik (Piano Concerto for the Left Hand), Op. In 1965, before a scheduled tour of Russia with the Cleveland Orchestra, Leon Fleisher began to suffer symptoms of a debilitating condition of his right hand, later diagnosed as focal dystonia, a neurological condition that causes the fingers to curl into the palm of the hand. He continued teaching and conducting online master classes into the final weeks of his life. In 2003, Fleisher joined forces with his wife, pianist Katherine Jacobson, to form the Fleisher-Jacobson Duo, giving concerts world-wide and recording for Sony Classical. Our hearts go out to Leon’s wife, Katherine, and his family and loved ones. Jasmine Hogan, Harp

His first choice was Ravel's Piano Concerto for the Left Hand. Symphony No. • Leon Fleisher: The Complete Album Collection, Sony Classical Records, 2013 They emigrated to …

For members of the Peabody family, it is a deeply personal loss. The manuscript was discovered among his papers after the death of his widow in 2002. 25, the Grieg and Schumann piano concertos, Franck's Symphonic Variations, and Rachmaninoff's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. Peabody Chamber Orchestra Nicholas Kamm… Fleisher was interviewed live by Peabody faculty member Ray Sprenkle -- a noted composer, historian and lecturer -- against the backdrop of the gorgeous Peabody Library. He was particularly well known for his interpretations of the two piano concertos of Brahms and the five concertos of Beethoven, which he recorded with George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra. The cause of death was cancer.

29", "Classical Music Is Supreme At The Nation's Highest Court", "Leon Fleisher, renowned Baltimore concert pianist, dies at 92", "My Nine Lives by Leon Fleisher and Anne Midgette | WQXR Features", "Leon Fleisher, The Pianist Who Reinvented Himself, Dies At 92", "Leon Fleisher, 92, Dies; Spellbinding Pianist With One Hand or Two", "MusicalAmerica – About Us: Musical America Award Winners", "America to Celebrate Five Extraordinary Artists on Sunday, December 2, 2007", "St. Olaf College to honor piano legend Leon Fleisher and host piano master class", "Leon Fleisher | 2009 Honorees | Amherst College", Kennedy Center names 2007 honors recipients, Pianist / Conductor / Teacher Leon Fleisher, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Leon_Fleisher&oldid=983343273, Classical pianists who played with one arm, Fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Fellows of the Royal Conservatory of Music, Prize-winners of the Queen Elisabeth Music Competition, Short description is different from Wikidata, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SNAC-ID identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, 1992: Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, This page was last edited on 13 October 2020, at 18:08. Fleisher was born on July 23, 1928, in San Francisco, the son of Bertha and Isidor Fleisher. Leon Fleisher made his debut with the New York Philharmonic, conducted by Pierre Monteux, when he was 16 years old. Leon Fleisher holds the Andrew W. Mellon Chair at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. His parents were Jewish immigrants, his father from Odessa and his mother from Poland. [13], He continued to be involved in music, both conducting and teaching for more than 60 years at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, the Curtis Institute of Music, and the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto; he was also closely associated with the Tanglewood Music Center. He was among that year’s recipients. Donations to the fund will support piano scholarships and purchasing pianos at Peabody. Yury Shadrin, piano. Soovin Kim, Violin. Prior to attending the Cleveland Institute of Music, Jacobson Fleisher graduated from St. Olaf College, receiving her bachelor of music degree. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: At age nine, he became one of the few child prodigies to be accepted for study with the renowned Austrian teacher Artur Schnabel, who taught him in a tradition that descended directly from Beethoven through Carl Czerny and Theodor Leschetizky. His approach to teaching went as deep as possible – showing young artists how to connect a love of music to the world around them. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Violin Concerto No. Tian Lu, piano Jacobson Fleisher gave the North American premiere of the “Concertino for Piano and Chamber Orchestra” by the late Greek Cypriot composer Phanos Dymiotis (Leon Fleisher, conducting). 5 in A major


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