Canada’s leading piano accompanist, no more

Canada’s leading piano accompanist, no more


norman lebrecht

January 08, 2014

News has reached us belatedly of the death on December 13 of Dale Bartlett, aged 77. A Cortot pupil, he won the Viotti competition in Italy and did a round of concerto performances before settling into a groove as his country’s accompanist of choice.

Julian Armour, artistic director of the Chamber Players of Canada, writes: Dale was one of the very, very best – and always a lovely guy as well. The tremendous integrity of his playing, his almost superhuman technical perfection, his ESP-driven ensemble skills and his unerring musicality made him a colleague to treasure. And how refreshing! He was a musician who gave everything, delivered every single time, and never craved the spotlight he so richly deserved. Thank you, Dale, for so many great concerts and so many great memories!

dale bartlett


  • Dale was an exceptional person as well as an accomplished musician. I’m so sad that hes gone… He was not 86 by the way, but 76. I met him in his first years at “le Domaine Forget” and had the privilege to play with him at severals occasions. A fine and subtil musician, with big hearth and small ego. I remember in particular a memorable Shostakovitch quintett ( with Frederic Lodéon on the cello) where he had to show along his usual musicianship, a strong sense of ” présence d’esprit”, which was not the least of his qualities.

    I’m full of gratefullness toward him, as are probably many many musicians in Canada and abroad.

    Thank you Dale.

    Jean-Eric Soucy

  • John Devenish says:

    He was my piano teacher for many years at the Conservatoire de musique du Québec, Hull, and at the University of Ottawa. He embodied perfection at the piano and was a true gentleman. Truly a gentle man. This country never really knew what it had in him. Quebec did and he was much revered in his adopted home province. Precision and articulation in emotion and technique I will always remember as his demands of the player pupil at the keyboard. To this day I can hear him speaking of articulation on those terms. A strong and gentle guide, a consumate teacher.

    Thank you Dale Bartlett may you rest in peace.

    …avec gratitude.