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Nikita Magaloff (1912 - 1992)

When Nikita Magaloff was a child of six his parents fled Russia for Finland to escape the Revolution. The family stayed in Finland for four years, where Magaloff apparently had lessons from Alexander Siloti, then finally settled in Paris. Magaloff enrolled at the Paris Conservatoire where he studied piano with Isidor Philipp, graduating at the age of seventeen with a premier prix. Whilst in Paris he also received private lessons in composition from Sergei Prokofiev, who was a friend of the family, and high praise in the form of a testimonial from Ravel who wrote, ‘In Magaloff a great, a truly extraordinary musician is born.’

From 1930 Magaloff was violinist Joseph Szigeti’s accompanist. They appeared at the Wigmore Hall in London in May 1933 and at the London Palladium in February 1934. At a solo recital in London’s Wigmore Hall in September 1935 Magaloff (for some reason referred to as ‘Prince’ Nikita Magaloff ) played Weber’s Piano Sonata No. 4 in E minor, some Chopin and Scarlatti. Magaloff’s defining pianistic characteristics were noticed at the outset of his career by a critic of this concert, who commented on ‘…a limpid tone and a certain controlled impetuosity’.




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