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October, 2001
Letters to the Editor

[Maryla Jonas] [Etelka Freund] [Lubka Kolessa] [Concert Schedules] [Mona Golabek]
[Gila Goldstein] [Janice Weber] [Elena Kuschnerova] [Rosario Andiano] [Mabel Pugh]

Subj: More Maryla Jonas material
Date: 9/10/2001
From: N. Nettheim
To: PianoWomenEditor

Hello Rose,

I've now placed a good deal more Maryla Jonas material on my web site at: http://users.bigpond.net.au/nettheim/jonas/jonaindx.htm

There are now ten items, including a discography. I re-named the original 1947 article, and have included a notice to that effect. You might like to refer just to the index, given above.

The sequel to the 1947 story is sad indeed.

Nigel Nettheim
Web site: http://users.bigpond.net.au/nettheim


Subj: Etelka Freund
Date: 9/20/2001
From: ma...
To: PianoWomenEditor

Hi,
I think you should have an entry for Etelka Freund. You can get a lot of information about her from the booklet of her Pearl double CD. There also was an entry for her at the Arbiter Museum of Historic Pianists, but the page looks to be inaccessible at the moment.

All best,
M.Farhan

----------------------------

Subj: Re: Etelka Freund
Date: 9/25/2001
To: ma...

Dear M. Farhan,
Thank you very much for recommending Etelka Freund. I was able to access her page online at the Arbiter Museum and found it fascinating. I checked several resources to see if she was listed in any music dictionaries and the only reference I could find was George Kehler's "The Piano in Concert" (1982) which had 3 sentences about her and 2 concert programs listed (Berlin, 1905 & Washington, D.C., 1949). But I contacted Donald Manildi at the International Piano Archives at Maryland and he copied the CD booklet from her Pearl double. There really is quite alot there. Meanwhile, I will add her in my October update and newsletter and link to the Arbiter page -- hope it is not down very often!

Sincerely,

Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.pianowomen.com


Subj: Lubka Kolessa
Date: 9/18/2001
From: lvao...
To: PianoWomenEditor

I'm brand new to this great site. Why can't I find Lubka Kolesa here?
bc

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Subj: Re: Lubka Kolesa
Date: 9/18/2001
To: lvao...

Dear Bill C.,

Thank you for visiting "Women at the Piano". The majority of names were taken from those listed in David Dubal's "The Art of the Piano", which she is not in. I see that she is listed in George Kehler's "The Piano in Concert". Do you know when she died? I would be happy for any information you may have on her and would welcome a biographical page (similar to that on Helen Schnabel) if you would like to write one, including sources and references. I won't be able to research her until closer to the end of the month. I could let you know what I find out then, unless I hear from you first.

Thank you for your interest.
Sincerely,
Rose Eide-Altman
editor, "Women at the Piano"
www.pianowomen.com

------------------------

Subj: Re: Lubka Kolessa
Date: 9/20/2001
From: lvao...
To: PianoWomenEditor

I'll poke around the Royal Conservatory of Music here in Toronto and send along whatever I come up with. Lubka Kolessa's son and I were closest of friends in our early- and middle-teens in the early fifties and she often made lunch for us. We hadn't a clue she was a world famous concert pianist. She was certainly a beautiful woman. She was famous in her later years for the teaching she did here in Toronto and in Montreal where, I think, she died four or five years ago. The local music shop has a box of her performances which I'll buy in the next few days. The liner notes may help us and I'll send them along to you. She was a rather big deal both in Europe and New York and I'm delighted you're going to add her to your great site.

Bill C., Toronto

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Subj: Re: Lubka Kolessa
Date: 9/24/2001
From: lvao...
To: PianoWomenEditor

(explained attachments). . .It's charming to recall those early-fifties days of playing with her son Igor in her house as a youngster. She was a dramatic and beautiful presence even for us. We weren't allowed to talk much on the ground floor which was where she taught. She made sandwiches and soup for us on weekends and chatted with us at the kitchen table for 15 or 20 minutes on those occasions. Listening to her cds now is thrilling. Her scarlatti is first rate. It all is but I have a special admiration for pianists who do Scarlatti very well.

A few days back I started a thread in rec.music.classical seeking suggestions as to Notable Variations. I started with the Goldbergs, the Diabellis and something else and got about fifteen suggestions. Just now I'm listening to Lubka Kolessa's performance of Mozart's Variations on a Theme by Gluck, a piece no one suggested. Love that'd.

My wife and I were in a box at Royal Albert Hall two days after the WTC catastrophe. Sir Colin Davis interrupted our furious welcoming applause for him by raising his hands to us and ask that we join him in a minute of silent reflection before beginning the performance of Beethoven's Pastoral. The faces and costumes of a Royal Albert audience reflect all mankind. The minute of silence was profound. God Bless us all.

Bill C.

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Subj: Re: Lubka Kolessa
Date: 9/24/2001
To: lvao...

Dear Bill C.,

Thank you for your nice letter and attachments... I had emailed Donald Manildi at IPAM (International Piano Archives at Maryland) where they have almost every recording made by a pianist, and he copied the liner notes of the Doremi CD and I picked it up this morning I did run across that Doremi web page on her, so I may link to that for now. She has an entry in the excellent (but out of print) book "The Piano in Concert" by George Kehler (pub. 1982):

"LUBKA KOLESSA. Ukrainian pianist, comes from an eminent family of Ukrainian musicians. She was born on May 19, 1904" [CD states 1902] "in Lviv (or Lemberg, Western Ukraine). Luka Kolessa studied and graduated from the State Academy of Music and the Performing Arts of Vienna. At the Academy her teachers were Louis Thern and Emil von Sauer and they guided her through her first successes, which came very early. At the age of sixteen, Kolessa was in the 'Meisterschule" of the Academy studying with von Sauer (ca. 1920); she concertized and a few years later continued studying with Eugene D'Albert. Her first spectacular success (for a girl of fourteen) came in 1918 when she won the coveted State Prize at the Vienna State Academy of Music Competition. Public appearances started very early and by 1920 she was well on the way of establishing a future. In the 1920's she performed in most cities of Europe with great success. After 1929, Kolessa's career established her as a leading pianist not only in Europe but also in other locales. She visited South America, and later performed in the U.S. and Canada. In the 1930's and 1940's she was frequently guiest soloist of orchestral programs in Europe, appearing most often with such conductors as Furtwangler, Weingartner, Mengelberg, Bruno Walter, Sir Henry Wood, Hans Kindler, etc. In Canada she was soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra. But from the beginning much of her musical activity centered in Germany. In the 1920's she gave recitals in Berlin alsmost every year. On May 21, 1937, Kolessa appeared on British television (probably the first such performance by a pianist wearing Ukrainina folk dress). In 1939 she recorded a number of works for HMV in Germany. In 1940 the pianist moved to Toronto, where she remained professor at the Royal Conservatory for years. In the later years she also taught at the McGill University Conservatory/Montreal. Kolessa taught also at the Ukrainian Music Institue, New York (1959-1960), where she was invitied by the Institute's founder, pianist/teacher Roman Sawycky, to lead a master piano class."
The book also lists 8 programs, 3 in the 1920's from Frankfurter; 2 in Town Hall, NY, 1943; 2 in Carnegie Hall, 1948 & 1950; and one in Toronto, 1948.

As far as other reference books, the only English music dictionary she is listed in, Thompson's "Cyclopedia", lists her as a man in a short, 3 sentence entry. She is in several French and German music dictionaries also... In the magazine article index there is an article by Jack Silver, who wrote the liner notes, entitled "In Search of Kolessa" in the Autumn 2000 issue of "International Classical Record Collector".

Thank you for bringing this fascinating woman to my attention...

Sincerely,
Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.pianowomen.com


Subj: Concert schedules info request
Date: 9/9/2001
From: DMG...
To: PianoWomenEditor

Dear Editor,

I really am delighted to have found your web site on female pianists. Can you help further by suggesting how I can find out concert schedules for the coming year for favorite pianists such as Martha Argerich?

Thanks,
D. G...

------------------------------

Subj: Re: Concert schedules info request
Date: 9/11/2001
To: DMG...

Dear D. G...,

Thank you for visiting PianoWomen.com. If a pianist doesn't have a personal website with concert appearance information then the best way to find out is to email their manager. You can find a listing of their managers at www.musicalamerica.com . You don't have to have a membership to search for an artist's manager. Choose "Artist Search" from the main page and fill in the form at the bottom of the page. Note that they will only search 3 names for non-subscribers. Often the major artists have more than one manager and most of the time these companies have web sites that make contacting easier.

I have chosen to link to a "fan" site for Martha Argerich, which lists many interviews, rather than the management site which has limited personality information (and no concert tour information the last time I checked). But for most artists I link to the management page, if they have a site. Some major companies are still in the process of publishing online.

Best wishes in your search,

Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.PianoWomen.com


Subj:trying to find mona?
Date: 9/10/2001
From: kb...
To: PianoWomenEditor

Have you ever heard of a pianist named mona goldaback (sp?). apparently she was the daughter of a holocaust victim, who sent her to the u.k. just prior to wwII as part of the kindertransport program, to get jewish children safely out of the country.
any help would be great.

--------------------------------

Subj:Re: trying to find mona?
Date: 10/01/2001
From: PianoWomenEditor
To: kb...

Mona Golabek currently hosts a radio program, based in Southern California, that combines classical music and poetry. The website is www.RomanticHours.com. There is a biography page on that site, but there is also a very interesting interview located at www.talkcity.com/transcripts/women/3-29-2000.1-1.htmpl. None of those sources list such a background, and the interview centers around her mother's influence on her life. George Kehler's book, The Piano in Concert, published in 1982, seems to regard her as an important, upcoming artist, though I don't know how much performing she does now:

American pianist, was born in Los Angeles in 1950, and began concertizing at the age of eight. A graduate of the Peabody Cons. Golabek began her early studies with her mother, and studied during her formative hears with Joanna Graudan. Subsequently, she worked with Gerhard Albersheim, Leon Fleisher, Sergio Calligarris, and Reginald Stewart. Since then, she has won a long list of awards... In 1970 Golabek was recipient of the "People's Prize" at the International Warsaw Piano Competition, and was engaged to perform a tour of Poland. She has since concertized in Japan, Mexico, Sweden, the United States, Poland, and Central America. In 1971 Golabek was selected for the Ford Foundation's Young Artists Award, entitling her to commission a piano concerto. The new work, by William Kraft, was premiered by Golabek with Zubin Mehta and the Los Angeles Phil. in Nov. of 1973. As winner of the 1972 Young Concert Artists Internaitonal Auditions, Golabek made her highly acclaimed New York debut on April 3, 1973, in the Young Concert Artists Series at Hunter College. She is currently (early 1980's) an artist-in-residence at UCLA.


Subj: my website
Date: 9/8/2001
From: GilaGoldstein
To: PianoWomenEditor

Dear Mrs. Eide-Altman,

I will appreciate if you could add my name linked to my website to your list of women pianists on your site. Click here: Gila Goldstein (http://www.gilagoldstein.com). I have just discovered your site today and find it wonderful that it exists. Great idea.

Thank you,
With kind regards,
GILA


Subj: you forgot one
Date: 9/12/2001
From: jl...
To: PianoWomenEditor

Please don't forget my good friend Janice Weber. See www.janiceweber.com
J. L., Ph.D.

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Subj: Re: you forgot one
Date: 9/25/2001
To: jl...

Dear Dr. L.
Thank you for visiting "Women at the Piano" and for your interest in the site. I greatly enjoyed visiting Janice Weber's site and will include her in my October update, as well as mention her in my "New This Month" page and include your letter in my "Letters to the Editor". When I had a chance I ran her through my list of research sources listed in the page "About This Site", and was surprised to see the dozen references to her listed in the Music Index Online search (a listing of music magazine articles) where I see that she most recently wrote an article for the March 2000 Clavier magazine. It is encouraging to see her success in writing books as well as teaching and performing. Sometimes I think that other music professionals or the public view such diversity of creativity as not being serious about music, rather than a complementary outpouring of energy. From my perspective it is more common in women pianists, I run across it frequently in my research, and maybe that is one more reason why they aren't always taken as seriously. It's an idea and there are many facets to it.

Thank you again for your suggestion to include Janice Weber,
Sincerely,
Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.pianowomen.com


Subj: Elena Kuschnerova
Date: 9/10/2001
From: gara...
To: PianoWomenEditor

Hi,

Elena Kuschnerova is lacking in the female pianist list, see http://kuschnerova.de

Best,
Dmitry
-----------------------------
Subj: Re: Elena Kuschnerova
Date: 9/11/2001
To: gara...
Dear Dmitry,

Thank you for updating me with the latest URL for Elena Kuschnerova. I have her listed in my page of Other Contemporary Pianists, but I see the link is old, so I will change it at my next update to http://kuschnerova.de.

Sincerely,
Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.PianoWomen.com

---------------------------

Subj: Re: Elena Kuschnerova
Date: 9/11/2001
From: gara...
To: PianoWomenEditor

Dear Rose,
Thank you for your response. Your site was mentioned in the Usenet: http://groups.google.com/groups?hl=en&threadm=3B9C6BBC.1B05141D %40jpl.nasa.gov&prev=/groups%3Fnum%3D25%26hl%3Den%26group%3Drec.music. classical.recordings%26start%3D25%26group%3Drec.music.classical.recordings that is why I wrote to you.

Yes, I remember that Elena Kuschnerova was in the list of "other pianists" on some web site, so it is yours. Her site at Geocities is a mirror whereas http://kuschnerova.de is her main site.

I understand that compiling a list of female pianists is a hudge task. I heard that at the moment there are about 15000 professional pianists on the market, who are striving for a career as performers. And about a half of them should be female!

I think that some clear criterion should be applied to find out which artists should be included in the main list and which in the list of other pianists, and this criterion should be explicitly stated. The main list should be kept short enough. At the moment, it is unclear what criterion was used and it seems that there are some artists in the main lists that are not top concert pianists but rather teaching staff at Schools of Music or Conservatories, such as
Natalya Antonova
Jean Barr
Larissa Dedova
Marian Hahn
Ellen Mack
Ann Schein (dead link)
Patricia Zander

Some of concert artists in the list are probably not that good and more suited for the list of other pianists than for the list of top concert pianists (Regina Shamvili?). I understand that it is difficult to listen to all these pianists and decide who is a top artist and who is not. If I would be the editor, I would use, as a zero approximation, the following criterion for the inclusion in the main list:
Sufficient concert activity as soloist
or
Sufficient number of commercial CD recordings

I believe that in a couple of years all serious concert artists will have web sites providing these informations and the task will become easier.

Returning to Elena Kuschnerova, she has several highly acclaimed CD, she is playing big recitals, and, last but not least, she is the leading (female) pianist in the world distributing her music via Internet, see http://mp3.com/kuschnerova . That is why I would consider indluding Elena Kuschnerova in the main list.

Warm regards,
Dmitry

----------------------------------

Subj: Re: Elena Kuschnerova
Date: 9/11/2001
To: gara...

Thank you for your letter. I realize that my initial label of "national or international" performing artist is rather vague and actually I do agree with you that those names you mentioned are now known more as teachers than performers. I have been considering various ways of identifying or just making one large list to avoid any controversy, but then there are obviously international artists, which we probably both agree on and that you did not contest, that should be distinct from those up and coming artists. Actually I think that less than half of the "15000" pianists are women, but that still leaves many. And maybe I should just categorize them by country, but many are residents of countries they are not born in, so I hesitate to add that label.

I must admit to a personal bias toward older artists that are still playing, which includes the teachers listed, and younger artists that may give up playing after they have to "choose" between family and/or finances or other life changing activities that often have more impact on women. So in a way the lists are the young versus the older who have stuck with it as a full career, even if it involves more teaching as they get older.

Thank you for pointing out broken links, I was just checking some more today. I need to sign up with a service that will do it for me, that is probably my next step. The site is still rather new and I am still working things out.

Again, your comments are appreciated.
Sincerely,
Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.pianowomen.com


Subj: Rosario Andiano
Date: 9/9/2001
From: b...r...
To: PianoWomenEditor

Dear Editor:
Many years ago I took piano lessons at a convent from a teacher names Mrs. Berkowitz. Her performing name as I recall was Rosario Andiano. Mrs. Berkowitz was married to a flutist who played with the NY Symphony. This goes back to the late 60's early 70's.

Mrs. Berkowtiz was a wonderful artist and human being. I lost track of her after discontinuing playing the piano but I often think of her now as I practice again. Have you heard of her? Does she have any recordings. I've been unsuccessful so far in trying to locate her until I found this site on my computer.

Thanking you in advance for any assistance I am
Sincerely,
P. Casey

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Subj: Re: Rosario Andiano
Date: 9/25/2001
To: b...r...

Dear P. Casey,

I've looked in several sources for more information on Rosario Andiano and was unable to find any reference to her. The sources I check are listed in my site page "About This Site" at www.pianowomen.com/about.html. I am including your letter in my "Letters to the Editor" page for October and maybe a reader will recognize her from your letter and write in about her. Meanwhile, best wishes on your search and thank you for visiting "Women at the Piano".

Sincerely,
Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.pianowomen.com


Subj: Mabel Pugh
Date: 9/16/2001
From: crw...
To: PianoWomenEditor

I'm looking for any information about a woman I know to have been a concert pianist in 1895and who died as Mabel Pugh in the late 1960s. I saw pictures of her with royalty as a result of her career. In 1960 she still had her grand piano. I don't know her maiden name.Thank you for your time. C. Wood.

--------------------------------

Subj: Re: Mabel Pugh
Date: 9/25/2001
To: crw...

Dear C.Wood,
I've looked in several sources for more information on Mabel Pugh and was unable to find any reference to her. The sources I check are listed in my site page "About This Site" at www.pianowomen.com/about.html. I am including your letter in my "Letters to the Editor" page for October and maybe a reader will recognize her from your letter and write in about her. Meanwhile, best wishes on your search and thank you for visiting "Women at the Piano".

Sincerely,
Rose Eide-Altman
editor, Women at the Piano
www.pianowomen.com

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