Gergor Piatigorsky: The Life and Career of the Virtuoso Cellist - by Terry King

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Terry King was a student of Gregor Piatigorsky. This exhaustively researched book relies on King’s own experiences, family records and Piatigorsky’s autobiography, Cellist, to tell the story of his life in its full richness. Having to help provide for his family from the age of 8 and then thrown out of his home into a bitter Moscow winter at age 12, cellist Gregor Piatigorsky’s career began as that of an archetypal struggling artist. He scraped up lessons as he could, and using secondhand and borrowed instruments earned a meager living. The October Revolution brought changes to all, and Piatogorsky was eventually forced to escape to Warsaw. He enjoyed an initial success with the Warsaw Philharmonic, but after having to relocate to Berlin a few months later, he again struggled in poverty. In time, his skill and mastery of the cello allowed him to emerge as solo cellist with the Berlin Philharmonic. He settled in the United States during World II, where he continued a brilliant career that cemented his place as one of the twentieth century's greatest musicians. A series of 30 reminisces from well known players and students, along with Piatigorsky’s comments on techniques and some of his other interests, wraps up this monumental work, ending it with a personal touch. 358 pages, paperback“What a great service you have done to the cello world! It is fascinating to read and learn so much of his pre-America life, too! It is great!” - cellist Lynn Harrell “Gregor Piatigorsky was one of the most fascinating and charismatic people I have ever encountered. His story, by turns tragic and exhilarating, is unique. It is wonderful that Terry King has now chronicled the personal and musical life of this amazing personality.” - cellist Steven Isserlis “I was amazed. It was like reading about my father for the first time.” - Dr. Joram Piatigorsky “Terry King as given all of us a great gift—a very personal and loving look into the life of one of the greatest artists and most colorful personalities in music history.” - William Preucil, Concertmaster, Cleveland Orchestra “I am so happy that Terry King has written this informative and often touching account of my husband's life as a cellist and great artist. He has beautifully and painstakingly given us all a treasured gift with this work. I admire the effort he has made to write this book and am deeply grateful for the contribution it makes to our family and music lovers throughout the world.” - Jacqueline Piatigorsky “Wow, it is the best of this genre that I have seen! I am continually both moved and fascinated…” - cellist Paul Katz “At last we have a book that does some justice to Gregor Piatigorsky.” Strad, Dec 2010 "This is what we have long been waiting for: a book that finally puts the Great Piatigorsky in historical context. Terry King's amazing research and scholarship enlivens the subject and enlightens his readers; a superb achievement deserving of the deepest bows. - cellist Nathaniel Rosen “In Terry King, Piatigorsky’s protégé and friend, Piatigorsky finds the perfect champion. The book is indispensable reading for cellists, string players, and all music lovers.” - Strings, May 2011 “…an amazing book…would be number one on New York Times Reading List About Cellists.” - Huffington Post, Dec 2010 “…thoroughly researched biography…tremendous work of scholarship is rich in history…” - Polish Music Newsletter, April 2011
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