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, Pressler, Menahem

Picture: , Pressler, Menahem

Magdeburg (Germany), 1923. Menahem Pressler, founding member and pianist of the Beaux Arts Trio, has established himself among the world's most distinguished and honored musicians, with a career that spans over five decades. Born in Magdeburg, Germany in 1923, Pressler fled Nazi Germany in 1939 and emigrated to Israel. Pressler’s world renowned career was launched after he was awarded first prize at the Debussy International Piano Competition in San Francisco in 1946. Pressler’s extensive tours of North America and Europe have included performances with the orchestras of New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Dallas, San Francisco, London, Paris, Brussels, Oslo, Helsinki and many others. After nearly a decade of an illustrious and praised solo career, the 1955 Berkshire Music Festival saw Menahem Pressler's debut as a chamber musician, where he appeared as pianist with the Beaux Arts Trio. This collaboration quickly established Pressler's reputation as one of the world's most revered chamber musicians. For nearly 60 years, Menahem Pressler has taught on the piano faculty at the world renowned Indiana University Jacobs School of Music where he currently holds the rank of Distinguished Professor of Music as the Charles Webb Chair. Equally as illustrious as his performing career, Professor Pressler has been hailed as "Master Pedagogue" and has had prize-winning students in all of the major international piano competitions, including the Queen Elizabeth, Busoni, Rubenstein, Leeds and VanCliburn competitions among many others. In addition to teaching his private students at Indiana University, he continuously presents master classes throughout the world, and continues to serve on the jury of many major international piano competitions. Among his numerous honors and awards, Pressler has received honorary doctorates from the University of Nebraska, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and the North Carolina School of the Arts, six Grammy nominations (including one in 2006), a lifetime achievement award from Gramophone magazine, Chamber Music America's Distinguished Service Award, the Gold Medal of Merit from the National Society of Arts and Letters. He has also been awarded the German Critics "Ehrenurkunde" award, and election into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2005 Pressler received two additional awards of international merit: the German President's Deutsche Bundesverdienstkreuz (German Cross of Merit) First Class, Germany's highest honor, and France's highest cultural honor, the Commandeur in the Order of Arts and Letters award. In 2012 he has received the highest honor of the ATMN (American Music Teachers Association). In addition to recording nearly the entire piano chamber repertoire with the Beaux Arts Trio on the Philips label, Menahem Pressler has compiled over thirty solo recordings, ranging from the works of Bach to Ben Haim.

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