Alfred Cortot was born in Nyon, Switzerland in 1877. He studied with Emile Descombes (a pupil of Chopin) and Diemer at the Conservatoire. He developed a deep appreciation for the works of Wagner and was devoted to the cause of promoting his work. He continued performing and conducting throughout his career and co-founded L'Ecole Normale de Musique in 1920 with Adolphe Mangeot. During the summer months, Cortot would hold master classes at the Paris school. One of the cornerstones of Cortot's enduring legacy is the large number of students he taught. His numerous editions of Chopin, Liszt and Schumann are still consulted by many pianists. Cortot recorded copiously for HMV over a period of some 40 years. He also wrote books on French piano music and on aspects of Chopin. Cortot died in Lausanne, Switzerland on June 15, 1962.