Siloti, Alexander, eminent Russian pianist, pedagogue, and conductor; b. near Kharkov, Oct. 9, 1863; d. N.Y., Dec. 8, 1945. He studied piano with Zverev and Nikolai Rubinstein at the Moscow Cons., and theory there with Tchaikovsky (1876–81), winning the gold medal. He made his debut as a pianist in Moscow in 1880; then made a tour in Germany; Liszt accepted him as a student in 1883, and Siloti continued his study with him in Weimar until Liszt’s death in 1886. Returning to Russia, he was a prof. of piano at the Moscow Cons. (1888–91); among his students was Rachmaninoff (his first cousin). Between 1891 and 1900 he lived in Germany, France, and Belgium; returned to Russia in 1901 and conducted the concerts of the Moscow Phil. Soc. during the 1901–02 season; in 1903 he organized his own orch. in St. Petersburg; these concerts acquired great cultural importance; Siloti invited Mengelberg and Mottl as guest conductors, and Rachmaninoff, Casals, and Chaliapin as soloists. In 1915 he began a series of popular free concerts, and in 1916 started a Russian Musical Fund to aid indigent musicians. In 1919 he left Russia; in 1922 he settled in N.Y, where he was active principally as a teacher but continued to appear as a soloist with American orchs.; from 1925 to 1942 he was on the faculty of the Juilliard School of Music. He publ, a collection of piano pieces which he ed., with indications of fingering and pedaling; also arranged and ed. concertos by Bach and Vivaldi. He publ, a book of reminiscences of Liszt (St. Petersburg, 1911; Eng. tr., Edinburgh, 1913).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire