On a roll? Piano star becomes active professor

The old adage of ‘those who can do…’ is pretty relevant to musicians at the peak of their careers. When the high gigs and fees are rolling in all over the world, who has time to teach?

This morning, Sony poster boy Igor Levit, 32, let it be known that, from October, he will be professor at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien in Hanover, northern Germany.


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    • I respectfully suggest that the break-up of a union of which he is a contributing member is indeed his political business. And if his encore “blew it in the UK” for him, then the UK needs to grow a thicker skin.

      • It may have escaped your notice that he is a Russian . Europe and even more so the UK is NONE of his business

  • – Those can both do and teach may shortchange their students on available time.

    – Heinrich Neuhaus may now be more famous as the teacher of such top pianists as Gilels, Richter, Lupu, but he was a great pianist in his own right. The same could perhaps be said about other eminent teachers of in the Soviet Union. How much of that do we still see that today, anywhere in the world?

  • It’s not uncommon for great soloists to also teach. Janos Starker was a leading example. Today Midori and Julia Fischer, among others, have major teaching positions. Being on the road constantly can lose its charm and isn’t that compatible with family life.

    • Most prominent today teachers: Zakhr Bron, Ivan Galamian, Dorothy DeLay, Arie Vardi, Yohevet Kaplinsky didn’t have concert careers. Igor Levitt disappointed me with his mannered style. But his name ‘ll bring prestige to school.

      • DeLay was not a great teacher. Her students played any way they felt like. She pushed the individualism that destroyed musical style. She was an assistant who got too much power. Lillian Fuchs, Lucile Lawrence, Constance Keene, now these were great teachers.

        • I agree about Dorothy DeLay. She usurp Ivan Galamian student Izkhak Perelman and claimed as his own teaching success. Midori quit studying with her.

  • Pandering to the popular political narrative and accosting influential critics can only take you so far …

  • One of the greatest piano teachers who ever lived was also one of the greatest pianists: Franz Liszt.

    Of course, he didn’t perform as much when he taught most of his later students, most of whom became famous in their own right; but in his youth in Paris, before becoming so famous, he taught many hours every day (at all levels) just to support himself.

  • It is extremely rare to come across a concert artist who is not also a teacher, even if not full time. Full time teaching is taken up after the touring life becomes tiresome, not necessarily at a point that an artist can no longer perform at top level consistently, although that does happen on occasion. For every artist who never took students, I can give you five hundred who did.

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