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Josef Lhévinne

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Occupation(s)  Pianist
Education  Moscow Conservatory
Role  Pianist

Name  Josef Lhevinne
Instruments  Piano
Genres  Classical music
Josef Lhevinne wwwnaxoscomSharedFilesImagesArtistsPictures
Native name  Iosif arkaad\'evich Levin
Birth name  Joseph Arkadievich Levin
Born  13 December 1874 Oryol, Russia (1874-12-13)
Died  December 2, 1944, New York City, New York, United States
Books  Basic Principles in Pianoforte Playing
Albums  The Golden Age Of Piano Virtuosi
Similar People  Rosina Lhevinne, Harold Bauer, Alfred Wallenstein, Rudolph Ganz, Thomas Beecham

Josef lh vinne 1874 1944 schultz evler the blue danube

Josef Lhévinne (13 December 1874 – 2 December 1944) was a Russian pianist and piano teacher. Lhévinne wrote a short book in 1924 that is considered a classic: Basic Principles in Pianoforte Playing. Asked how to say his name, he told The Literary Digest it was lay-VEEN.


Josef Lhévinne Josef Lhvinne Wikipedia

Josef lh vinne rachmaninoff prelude no 5 in g minor op 23


Josef Lhévinne Josef Lhevinne plays Chopin Prelude op28 no16 YouTube

Joseph Arkadievich Levin (the name was altered in western Europe by a manager who thought "Lhévinne" more distinctive and less Jewish) was born into a family of musicians in Oryol and studied at the Imperial Conservatory in Moscow under Vasily Safonov. His public debut came at the age of 14 with Ludwig van Beethoven's Emperor Concerto in a performance conducted by his musical hero Anton Rubinstein. He graduated at the top of a class which included both Sergei Rachmaninoff and Alexander Scriabin, winning the Gold Medal for piano in 1892.

Josef Lhévinne Josef Lhvinne 1874 1944 Find A Grave Memorial

In 1898 he married fellow Moscow Conservatory student Rosina Bessie, also a pianist and winner of the Gold Medal for piano in her year, and the two began to give concerts together, a practice that lasted until his death. Faced with anti-semitism and the political turbulence of the period, they moved to Berlin in 1907 where Lhévinne gained a reputation as one of the leading virtuosi and teachers of his day. Trapped there as enemy aliens at the outbreak of World War I, having lost what money they had saved in Russian banks in the 1917 Revolution and unable to concertize due to the war, they endured years of considerable hardship surviving on the income from a handful of students.

Josef Lhévinne Fryderyk Chopin Information Centre Josef Lhvinne Biography

At last free to leave Germany, in 1919 the couple moved to New York City, where Lhévinne continued his concert career and taught piano at the Juilliard School. Regarded as one of the supreme technicians of his day by virtually all of his more famous contemporaries (even Vladimir Horowitz admired his vast pianistic command), he never achieved their level of success with the public, perhaps because he made it look and sound so easy, but mostly because he enjoyed teaching more than performing. He settled into a life of concert tours and teaching which continued until his sudden death from a heart attack in 1944 a few days short of his 70th birthday.


Josef Lhévinne Josef Lhevinne plays Sinding quotThe Rustle of Springquot YouTube

He left only a handful of recordings, some of which are considered to be examples of perfect technique and musical elegance. The discs of Chopin Etudes Op. 25. Nos. 6 and 11 and Schulz-Evler's arrangement of Johann Strauss II's Blue Danube Waltz are legendary among pianists and connoisseurs. His piano roll of Schumann's Papillons, Op. 2, is considered one of the definitive performances of that work. In the words of Harold Charles Schonberg: "His tone was like the morning stars singing together, his technique was flawless even if measured against the fingers of Hofmann and Rachmaninoff, and his musicianship was sensitive." Lhévinne made a number of piano rolls in the 1920s for Ampico, a collection of which were recorded and released on the Argo label in 1966. Lhévinne also recorded three times for the Welte-Mignon reproducing piano.


  • Basic Principles in Pianoforte Playing (1972), Dover Publications, New York, ISBN 0-486-22820-7 (Repr. d. Ausg. Philadelphia, Penn. 1924)
  • Notable students

  • Stell Andersen
  • Mildred Portney Chase
  • Adele Marcus
  • Harold Triggs
  • Paul Wells

  • Josef Lhévinne


    Der Kontrabandiste
    Die Lorelei


    Josef Lhévinne Wikipedia