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Demus, Jörg (Wolfgang)

Demus, Jörg (Wolfgang)

Demus, Jörg (Wolfgang) , noted Austrian pianist; b. St. Polten, Dec. 2, 1928. At the age of 11, he entered the Vienna Academy of Music. He also took lessons in conducting with Swarowsky and Josef Krips and in composition with Joseph Marx, and continued his piano studies with Gieseking at the Saarbriicken Cons. He then worked with Kempff, Michelangeli, Edwin Fischer, and Nat. He made his debut as a concert pianist at the age of 14 in Vienna, and his London debut in 1950. He then toured South America (1951). In 1956 he won first prize in the Busoni Competition in Bolzano. Apart from his solo recitals, he distinguished himself as a lieder accompanist to Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and other prominent singers. Demus assembled a large collection of historic keyboard instruments; publ. a book of essays, Abenteuer der Interpretation (1967), and, with Paul Badura-Skoda, an analysis of Beethoven’s piano sonatas (1970). In 1977 he was awarded the Beethoven Ring and in 1979 the Mozart Medal of Vienna.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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