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Chopin - Player Of Poetry And Power

The MHS Review 371 Vol. 10, No. 11 1986

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The New York Times


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Jan Gorbaty's talent became apparent at the age of three. When he was six he entered the historic Conservatory of Lwow, Poland (one of that country's oldest and most famous music institutions), which was founded by Chopin's pupil Mikuli. He studied with Leopold Muenzer (one of the five winners of the first International Chopin Competition in Warsaw in 1927, who was noted for his interpretation of Chopin mazurkas) and with Joseph Koffler, a Schoenberg disciple, who introduced the 12-tone system in Poland. Gorbaty graduated from the Conservatory summa cum laude and went on to become the youngest faculty member there. He also studied in Vienna with Paul Weingarten, a pupil of and assistant to Emil von Sauer.

Upon corning to the United States Gorbaty's mentor was Isabella Vengerova. His first appearance in the US with the Little Symphony was followed by his highly acclaimed Town Hall debut. He has since appeared frequently at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and Town Hall, and at universities and colleges all over the US as well as Austria, Poland, England, Germany, Holland, and Czechoslovakia.

Besides the standard repertoire, Gorbaty has performed works by many com­posers living in the US, such as Ben Weber, Karol Rathaus, Tadeusz Kassem, Vittorio Rietti, H.A. Schirnmerling, and Julius Hidman (a premiere perfor­mance). He also played the compositions of Julian Fontana, a pupil and friend of Chopin, which had not been performed for a century, and premiered Werner Josten's Concerto sacre no. 2 for piano and orchestra at the American Music Festival.

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