Joseffy, Rafael (1852-1915) | University of Illinois Archives

Name: Joseffy, Rafael (1852-1915)


Historical Note: Hungarian pianist Rafael Joseffy was born in Hunfal on July 3, 1852 and died in New York on June 25, 1915. His youth was spent in Miskolcz, where he began to study the piano at the age of eight. After further studies in Budapest he entered the Leipzig Conservatory (1866), where he was taught chiefly by E.F. Wenzel, though he also had a few lessons from Moscheles. From 1868 to 1870 he studied with Tausig in Berlin, and he spent the summers of 1870 and 1871 in Weimar taking lessons from Liszt. He first performed publicly in Berlin in 1870; soon he was giving concerts in most of the large European cities. In a review of 1874 Hanslick admired his brilliant technique but found his playing cold. Joseffy made his American debut in New York in 1879, playing concertos by Chopin and Liszt in addition to solo items, and then settled in the USA. He toured with Theodore Thomas and his orchestra, and gave many recitals, being one of the first to perform Brahms' works regularly. From 1888 to 1906 he taught the piano at the National Conservatory in New York. In his youth he composed some salon pieces, a set of lieder and numerous arrangements of works by Bach, Haydn, Chopin and others; but he was much better known for his editions of Chopin's works (15 volumes) and of studies by Czerny, Henselt, Schlozer and Moscheles; he also wrote a valuable of School of Advanced Piano Playing (New York, 1902).
Sources: Grove Music Online
Note Author: Noah Lenstra





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