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DAVID SAPERTON (1889-1970)
American pianist



David Saperton was a great pianist and perhaps an even greater teacher if we are to judge from the success of his students among whom were Jorge Bolet, Shura Cherkassky, Abbey Simon, Sidney Foster and Julius Katchen.

For reasons I cannot begin to fathom, Saperton did not achieve any significant success as a concert pianist and dedicated himself to teaching.  He married one of Leopold Godowsky's daughters and set about mastering Godowsky's transcentally difficult studies on the Chopin Études.  Godowsky introduced him to Josef Hofmann who took him on as his assistant and hired him as an instructor at the Curtis Institute.

It is said that by the time of the recordings you will hear below, his pianistic abilities were already subsiding.  God help us.  What must David Saperton's playing have been like as a younger man?

When I was a teenager in the mid 1960s, a friend of my mother's who knew him offered to introduce me and hook me up to take lessons from him.  In my infinite wisdom, I said, "Never heard of him," and politely declined.  I can only imagine . . .

Do not miss the Ravel at the end of this page.



Chopin Études, Op 10

recorded in 1952


2 in A minor
Godowsky-Chopin 4 in A minor "Ignis Fatuus"



3 in E major



Chopin-Godowsky  Study 13 in E minor after Op 10~6
for the left hand



7 in C major



Chopin-Godowsky  Studies after Op 10~7
14 in C major "Toccata"
15 in G major "Nocturne"



8 in F major



9 in F minor



10 in A major



11 in E major



12 in C minor "Revolutionary"




Chopin Études, Op 25

recorded in 1952


2 in F minor
Godowsky-Chopin 25 in F minor



5 in E minor
Godowsky-Chopin 33 in E minor



Chopin-Godowsky  Study in G minor after Op 25~6



11 in A minor "Winter Wind"



Chopin-Godowsky  Study 47 in G major after Op 25~9 & Op 10~5 "Badinage"




Chopin  Trois Nouvelles Études

recorded in 1952


1 in F minor



2 in A major [3 in the Paderewski edition]
45 Godowsky-Chopin in E major



3 in D major [2 in the Paderewski edition]




Albeniz-Godowsky  "Triana" from Iberia

recorded in 1940




J Strauss II-Godowsky  Symphonic Metamorphosis on Themes from Die Fledermaus

recorded in 1952


Part I



Part II




J Strauss II-Godowsky  "Artist Life"

recorded in 1952


Part I



Part II




Godowsky  "Alt Wien" from the Triakontameron

recorded in 1957




Godowsky  from Java Suite

1 Gamelan
02:524 "Chattering Monkeys at the Sacred Lake of Wendit"
04:369 "In the Streets of Old Batavia"

recorded in 1957




Ravel  Gaspard de la nuit

recorded in 1953


1 "Ondine"



2 "Le Gibet"



3 "Scarbo"










For those of you who enjoy murder mysteries, here is my first with a strong musical polemic as background

Murder in the House of the Muse

which is also available as an audiobook.



And this is the more recently published second mystery in the series:

Murder Follows the Muse



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