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Fleisher to hold workshops

by Chiho Iuchi

Suntory Hall welcomes U.S. pianist Leon Fleisher at a music workshop this month.

The Professional Training Workshops are organized by the Weil Music Institute at New York’s Carnegie Hall, with which Suntory Hall has been in partnership since 2006. The weeklong program includes coaching sessions, discussions and debut performances. Besides practical techniques and interpreting score, participants can learn about the philosophies of professional musicians directly from the artists themselves.

Born in San Francisco in 1982, Fleisher studied as a child prodigy under renowned pianist Artur Schnabel. He played with the New York Philharmonic at age 16, and in 1952 was the first U.S. pianist to win the Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition of Belgium.

In 1965, however, he lost the use of his right hand due to a nerve disease called focal dystonia. He continued performing by using a left-handed repertoire until he started to regain the use of his right hand in 1981 through massage and botox injections. In 2004, he released a CD titled “Two Hands.”

The program features the piano concertos of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and sets participants up to continue tackling his works.

Also featured are sessions on pilates by his daughter Leah. She is a harpist and physical therapist, who has helped her father recover from his disease.

The workshops are open to the public, providing opportunities to nurture new talents.

“Professional Training Workshops for Young Artists” featuring Leon Fleisher takes place at Suntory Hall on Oct. 9-16. The workshops cost ¥10,000. The Master Class takes place Oct. 12 (at 5 p.m.) and costs ¥1,000. The Debut Concert on Oct. 16 (at 7 p.m.) costs ¥3,000. For more information, call (03) 3584-9999 or visit www.suntory.co.jp/suntoryhall/