CHERKASSKY, SHURA (1911– ), pianist. Cherkassky was born in Odessa, and as a child received piano lessons from his mother until 1922, when his family left for the United States. There he studied at the Curtis Institute, Philadelphia, with Josef Hofmann. In 1923 he began playing in public; five years later he toured Australia and New Zealand. From that time, with few interruptions, he gave concerts in almost every country in the world. Cherkassky was a virtuoso of fiery temperament, and his performances were varied in execution, from careless, imprecise playing to that of the utmost brilliance and emotional warmth.
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