Born in New York City, Abram Chasins studied at the
Juilliard School, the Curtis Institute and Columbia University. His major
teachers included Ernest Hutcheson and Josef Hofmann. From 1926 to 1935, he
taught at Curtis and, for a decade beginning in 1935, he was an outstanding
pianist throughout the world, appearing in solo recitals and with leading
orchestras everywhere. Besides his solo engagements and recordings, he also
played and recorded duo-piano works with his wife, the pianist Constance Keene.
Chasins became famous for many other aspects of his musical career as well. More
than one hundred of his compositions have been published, performed and
recorded. He attained an international reputation in his early 20s as a protege
of Josef Hofmann. Subsequently, he became the first American composer of the
younger generation to be performed by Arturo Toscanini; the great maestro chose
his "Parade" and "Flirtation in a Chinese Garden" for a concert with the New
York Philharmonic. Chasins retired from the concert stage in 1946 to devote
himself entirely to the musical directorship of radio station WQXR, the radio
network of the New York Times with which he had been affiliated since 1943.
"Speaking of Pianists" (Alfred Knopf, 1957) was Chasins' first published book.
Other volumes from his hand, among them "The Van Cliburn Legend" (Doubleday,
1959), "The Appreciation of Music" (Crown, 1966), "Music at the Crossroads"
(MacMillan, 1972) and "Leopold Stokowski, A Profile" (Hawthorne, 1979), also won
wide attention. Chasins died in 1987.
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