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Bruno-Leonardo Gelber (Piano)

Born: March 19, 1941 - Buenos Aires, Argentina

The esteemed Argentine pianist, Bruno-Leonardo Gelber, is Austrian and French-Italian descent. His parents were musicians and he took up the piano at a very early age. He was only 5 when he made his first public appearance, and at 6 became a pupil of Vincenzo Scaramuzza. When he was 7 he was stricken with poliomyelitis. While confined to his bed for a year, he continued to practice with his bed slid under the piano. At age 8, he made his formal recital debut. When he was 15 he attracted wide notice when he appeared as soloist in the Robert Schumannís Piano Conceto under Lorin Maazel's direction in Buenos Aires. In 1960 he was awarded a French government grant and pursued his training in Paris with Marguerite Long. In 1961 he won 3rd prize in the Long-Thibaud competition.

In subsequent years Bruno-Leonardo Gelber toured all over the world, appearing as a soloist with the great orchsestras and as a recitalist in the major music centers. He has won deserved accolades for his compelling performances of the Classical and Romantic repertoire. In Europe he has been engaged by the Berliner Philharmoniker, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de France, London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Tonhalle Zürich and L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. He has also performed at the Vienna Musikverein, La Scala Milan, and at the Salzburg, Grenada, Aix-en-Provence, Lucerne and Zurich Festivals. In the USA he gave his concerto debut under Ernest Ansermet at the Stanford Festival, has played with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra and Cleveland Orchestra among others, and performed at Carnegie Hall, where his performance of Arnold Schoenberg was highly acclaimed. He has worked with conductors such as Sergiu Celibidache, Riccardo Chailly, Antal Doráti, Sir Colin Davis, Franz-Paul Decker, Charles Dutoit, Christoph Eschenbach, Claus Peter Flor, Bernard Haitink, James Judd, Emmanuel Krivine, Erich Leinsdorf, Ferdinand Leitner, Kurt Masur, Esa-Pekka Salonen, George Szell, Mstislav Rostropovich, Jeffrey Tate, Klaus Tennstedt and David Zinman.

In June 1996 Bruno-Leonardo Gelber toured Australia with huge success. Recent engagements include further appearances throughout Japan, where he will play with the NHK Orchestra and Charles Dutoit, the USA and Europe, including Berlin, Vienna, Paris, London, and in many cities in Germany and Italy. Altogether Gelber has given more than 4,500 concerts. The prestigious critic of Munich, Kaiser, wrote of him, "He is a marvel". Arthur Rubinstein considered him one of the greatest pianists of his generation and chose him to participate in a film that François Reichenbach dedicated to Rubinstein.

Bruno Leonardo Gelber's recordings, all of which have been universally acclaimed, have won several prestigious awards, including two Grand Prix de L'Académie Charles Cros and Le Prix de l'Académie de Paris. His recordings for EMI include a remarkable recording of both Johannes Brahms Piano Concertos, the 3rd and 5th L.v. Beethoven Piano Concertos, and a recording of Romantic Sonatas. For Denon he recorded the complete L.v. Beethoven Sonatas, the first release of which was recognised by the New York Times as one of the best recordings of 1989. Of the first four L.v. Beethoven discs, CD Review Magazine wrote "... quite simply the finest I have ever heard ... I could eulogise about the rest but there is no need; This is a pianist in a million. All in all, four CDs to really listen to and talk about."

More Photos

Source: Bakerís Biographical Dictionary of 20th Century Classical Musicians (1997); Various Websites (see links below)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (April 2007)

Bruno-Leonardo Gelber: Short Biography | Recordings of Instrumental Works

Links to other Sites

Gelber, Bruno Leonardo (Concerto Winderstein München) [German]
Bruno Leonardo Gelber (Transart)
Bruno Leonardo Gelber (Wikipedia) [German]

Beethoven Competition Bonn: Important bodies : Bruno Leonardo Gelber au TCE [French]
Sistema Musica: Il pianista che cadde sulla terra [Italian]

Biographies of Performers: Main Page | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
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