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CR-099. The art of Henry Neighaus. vol. 5

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Weight: 120 g

For those who listened to Neighaus' playing it seemed that there was nothing more natural than his perception of music. It was a priceless talent - to feel on stage as if one has opened the scores for the first time and just began to improvise. There was nothing secondary or prepared. It was a rare combination of freshness, light breath, noble pride, bright temperament and beautiful taste. The listener was fascinated by the fragrance of the slipping epoch, by the high European education. His Chopin interpretations were special: romantic artistry, nature-inspired bel canto on the piano, inner harmony and grace.
For me, the school of Neighaus' was and still remains a school of search. He never presented ready-made conceptions. It still seems miraculous how even after a hundredth plunge into Chopin's sonata together with a pupil was he able to be surprised and deeply touched by its beauty, to hear previously unknown tints of Chopin's thoughts. Contacts with him helped to impart great respect for culture. Never could he be called an erudite systematically accumulating knowledge. His education was rather borne by diverse aspirations, everlasting inquisitiveness and "openness" to life. Besides art, he had a vast knowledge in different fields, and we all unconsciously were becoming induced into this boundless world. He was noted of heart easiness and independence, ability to take doubt in himself and also in everything that is usually considered undoubted. His disarming self-irony acted on us, his pupils, stronger than any moralistic sermon.


Henry Neighaus, a great Russian pianist and pedagogue, was one of the most significant musicians in Russian history of the XX century.
He was born in 1888 in a Russain city of Elisavetgrad. Since his early childhood, he was always bound with music. His father Gustav Neighaus was a pianist and pedagogue, quite well known in his city; he became Henry's first music teacher. His mother Olga was a brilliant pianist and a sister of Felix Blumenfeld, an eminent musician, who had important impact on his young nephew's education. Another fa-mous relative of Henry Neighaus was the great Polish composer Carol Szimanovsky.
Neighaus began his concert activities rather early - he played his first public concert at the age of 9 in his home town. Later, he gave concerts in other cities, toured in Germany (1904, 1906) and Italy (1909).
In 1906, in Berlin, he met Leopold Godov-sky for the first time ant took several lessons. In 1912-14 he continued his studies with Godov-sky when he was a student in Vienna, in Mei-sterschule. At that time, he played many concerts and recitals in Austria and Germany.
In 1915, Neighaus graduated from Petrograd (former St.Petersburg) Conserva-toire. In 1916 - 1918, he worked in Tiflis (Tbilisi) Music College in Georgia. In the next four years Neighaus was in Kiev Conservatoire (since 1919 he was a professor). In 1922, he came to Moscow. For more than forty years he was a professor at the Moscow Conservatoire (in 1935-37 - its rector). Among his pupils were Sviatoslav Richter, Emil Gilels, Jakov Zak, Stanislav Neighaus, Eugeny Malinin, Vera Gornostaeva, Lev Naumov, Berta Maranz, Margarita Fedorova, Vladimir Krainev, Alexey Nasedkin, Igor Zhukov, Igor Nikonovich, Valery Kastelsky, Elena Richter, Oleg Boshnia-kovich and many other outstanding pianists and pedagogues.
At the same time, Neighaus continued his concert activities, giving recitals and playing concerts with orchestras and in ensembles (among his partners were David Oistrach, Beethoven Quartet and many other eminent musicians). His repertoire was enormous.
"Those who had heard his performances acquired something special that cannot be ex-plained, Jakov Milstein wrote about Neig-haus's concerts. - He was always different and yet always the same - artist - creator … it seemed that he did not play music but created it… He was overwhelmed by the emotion that seemed to be infinite".
Henry Neighaus died in 1964.

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