90th anniversary of Yakov Fliyer, great Russian pianist

Monday, October 21st, 2002, marks the 90th anniversary of Yakov Fliyer, an outstanding Russian pianist.

Fliyer was born in Orekhovo-Zuyevo (Moscow Region). In 1934, he graduated from the Moscow Conservatoire. In 1935, when a postgraduate student, the talented young man won the 2nd All-Union Contest of Musicians-Performers and the International Contest of Pianists in Vienna. In 1938, a year after finishing postgraduate courses, Fliyer won the third prize at the Eugene Ysaye competition in Brussels.

In 1937, Fliyer began to teach at the Moscow Conservatoire, where he was head of the piano chair from 1965. Among his pupils were such prominent musicians as Rodion Shchedrin and Mikhail Pletnev.

Fliyer, who began to give concerts when a student and had always been a great success among the public, was forced in 1949 to leave the stage for a whole decade when he only took part in ensembles from time to time.

A romantic-type pianist, expressive and strong-willed, Fliyer preferred large works of such composers as Liszt and Rakhmaninov. In his later days, he played much Schumann, Brahms, and Chopin. He was the first performer of Kabalevsky's 24 Preludes.

Fliyer died in Moscow on December 18th, 1977.

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