Tuesday, July 05, 2005

The "famously unfamous" Pianist

Nice write up in FanFaire of pianist Russell Sherman, who turns 75 this year.

"By choosing university (Columbia) over conservatory (e.g., Juilliard) and by shunning piano competitions, he eschewed the most direct line to celebrity, preferring instead to nourish "the soul" (through the study of the liberal arts) while he learned all about music and "mastered the piano" (and with it the light and dark sides of "the universe") under the guiding influence of his beloved teacher, Steuermann. Thus, when in his young professional life he came to the proverbial fork in the road, he was not forced to forsake one (teaching) for the other (concertizing); having the wherewithal and the courage to choose both, he did. And so it was that Russell Sherman came to balance his time between teaching and performing and happily, he has flourished in both worlds - though minus the glitz (as he probably likes it), and with but a gleam of fame. "Music," he wrote in his book, "is a cake which grows as you eat it, which has seven layers and seven more for each layer." In a very real sense, he's got his multi-layered cake, and eats it too."

Read the rest here.

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