Leo Sirota Collection
Sirota (1885-1965), outstanding Ukrainian-born pianist and teacher, studied in
St. Petersburg with Alexander Glazounov and later in Berlin with Ferruccio
Busoni. Sirota played Busoni's massive Concerto under the composer's baton and
soon established a firm reputation in the major cities of Europe. He also
performed in Soviet Russia. Following a trip to Japan in 1928, Sirota was
offered the directorship of the Ueno Imperial Academy in Tokyo. The Sirota
family settled in Japan and Leo was much sought-after as both recitalist and
teacher. During this period Sirota made recordings for Japanese Columbia,
including the first complete recording of Stravinsky's Three Scenes from
Petrouchka. At the outbreak of the Second World War, Sirota was exiled to a
village where he and his wife faced daily hardships and lived without a piano.
After 1945 Sirota moved to the United States and became artist-in-residence at
the St. Louis Institute of Music. He remained there for nearly 20 years,
continuing his concert activity and making an extensive series of radio
broadcasts. In 1963 Sirota returned to Japan for a series of concerts, where he
was warmly acclaimed by that country's musical community and was reunited with
several of his former pupils, such as Takahiro Sonoda.
As of 2013,
IPAM's Sirota Collection contains his commercial and privately-made recordings
and selected documentation on his concert activity.
10 am to 3 pm
Monday through Thursday
9 am to 5 pm
Monday through Friday
Donald Manildi, Curator
International Piano Archives at Maryland
Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library
8115 Alumni Dr.
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742 USA