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Ethel Leginska (1886 - 1970)

Ethel Leginska, born Leggins, was a child prodigy whose musical education at the Hoch Conservatory in Germany was sponsored by a local shipping magnate. She graduated at the age of ten and continued her studies with Theodor Leschetizky for three years, also studying for a while in Berlin. At the beginning of her career she adopted the name Leginska at a friend’s suggestion and retained it for the rest of her life.

After a successful London debut Leginska toured Europe. In 1906 she played the Henselt Piano Concerto in F minor Op. 16 in London with Henry Wood, a performance where the Queen’s Hall organ was used in the first movement. Two years later she gave a concert at Aeolian Hall, London playing works by her husband, the American composer Emerson Whithorne, Brahms’s Piano Sonata in F minor Op. 5 and short pieces by Cyril Scott and Edward MacDowell.




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