François, Samson, admired French pianist; b. Frankfurt am Main (son of the French consul there), May 18, 1924; d. Paris, Oct. 22, 1970. He began piano studies at a very early age and was only 6 when he played a Mozart concerto under Mascagni in Italy. While still a youth, he obtained 1st prizes at the Belgrade Cons, and the Nice Cons. He continued his training in Paris with Cortot at the École Normale de Musique and then with Long at the Cons, (premier prix, 1940). In 1943 he won 1st prize at the first Long-Thibaud Competition in Paris. From 1945 he toured regularly in Europe, and in 1947 he made his first appearances in the U.S. He subsequently played all over the globe, including Communist China in 1964. In addition to his notable performances of works by such French masters as Faure, Debussy, and Ravel, he was equally notable in his performances of Chopin and Schumann.
J. Roy, S. K: Le poete du piano (Paris, 1997).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire