Anton Kuerti

Pianist Anton Kuerti Taken To Hospital Mid-Recital

Monday, October 21st, 2013

Canadian pianist Anton Kuerti has been taken to hospital after falling ill during a recital in Florida.

According to eyewitnesses, Kuerti became disorientated and started repeatedly playing the same passage.

“One of the audience members who’s also a pianist actually went up to the stage to put his arm around him,” said concert organiser Alan Penchansky.

“He tried to find out what was wrong, and [Kuerti] started again. He simply was trapped,” he told Canadian press.

The fellow-musician, Santiago Rodriguez, a professor of keyboard performance at the Frost School of Music, eventually coaxed Kuerti off stage, and an intermission was called.

During the intermission, Kuerti was seen by paramedics and taken to hospital by ambulance. He did not return.

The Austrian-born pianist has been performing live almost all of his life – having first taken to the stage with the Boston Pops Orchestra at the age of 11.

As a soloist, he has specialised in Beethoven, frequently playing the composer’s entire cycle of 32 sonatas, and all five of his concertos.

In 1997, US classical music magazine Fanfare called him “the best pianist currently playing”, and he was an made an Officer of the Order of Canada the following year.

BBC Radio 3 also named him one of the 50 Great Pianists in 2012.

Now 75, he was performing at the Coral Gables Congregational Church in Miami when he was taken ill.

Audience member Dorothy Hindman said the pianist “spoke intelligently and humorously” before the recital, which focussed on Beethoven’s lesser-known works.

He started playing Rondo in G major, Op 51, No 29 with an “exceptionally clear tone”, she added, and his repetition of the closing theme was initially interpreted “as a private musical joke”.

But “Kuerti’s growing disorientation and numerous stops and starts during the second of the Eleven Bagatelles, Op 119, signalled clearly to the large audience that something was terribly wrong”.

Writing in the South Florida Classical Review, Hindman said the stricken musician received a standing ovation as he left the stage.


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One Response to Pianist Anton Kuerti Taken To Hospital Mid-Recital

  1. Benjamin says:

    Firstly, congratulations on the new role. Advocacy is such an itrapmont role and easy to make mistakes with. I think you should try to work out a job description, but rather than asking your employers, try to work something out with the young people you are advocating on behalf of. You may find that the role you play varies a lot from person to person; you could end up with several job descriptions depending on the individual needs of the young people and their levels of confidence. So maybe a starting point would be for you to come up with a list of all the ways in which you might advocate for young people and then to go through with them individually or in groups which of those things they want you to do, which they don’t and to make sure you give them ways to contribute other things that you haven’t thought of.Depending on the abilities of the students you may be able to get them to recall a time when they have been frustrated in school, a time when they felt people weren’t listening to them. Work with them to unpick what support they would have liked; try to figure out what an advocate might have done to alleviate the frustration.In terms of contacts, I think there are three groups of people you might find it useful to talk to:Experts in your students’ communication and learning issues: these will be your colleagues in the school.Experts in advocacy: these need not be in education, the challenges and methods will be similar across all fields. My sister-in-law works in this field I’ll get some contacts for you from her.Student voice experts: you will need to adapt the methods to the communication needs of your students, but the principles are the same. You can talk to us, but Lipson Community College, which I think is in your area, is supposed to have some very good practice.

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