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Viktoria Postnikova

A child prodigy, Viktoria Postnikova was born into a family of musicians. At the age of six she entered the Moscow Central Music School where she studied piano with E.B. Musaelian and made her public debut the following year playing a Mozart piano concerto. Postnikova continued her studies at the Moscow Conservatory with Yakov Flier. After winning a prize at the International Chopin Piano Competition, Postnikova won joint second prize with Semyon Kruchin at the Leeds International Piano Competition the following year: first place was taken by Rafael Orozco. A certain controversy surrounded this placing and Hans Keller, who thought Postnikova should have won first place, wrote ‘With intensely restrained intensity, with breathtaking poise between extremes of contrasting emotion, with an originality of insight that made every phrase…sound brand new—in short, with continuous inspiration and mastery, this twenty-two-year-old girl gave performance after performance which showed where music came from: that it was an urgent communication inexpressible by any other means. Miss Postnikova is a supreme artist who composes while she plays.’ Postnikova was then offered two appearances at the Proms in 1967. At the first she played Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor Op. 11 and at the second, Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor Op. 23. Her solo London debut was given in May 1968 at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in a programme of Beethoven, Schumann and Chopin. One critic summed up Postnikova’s gifts when he wrote,




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