Leon Fleisher, born in San Francisco on July 23, 1928, made his debut with that city's orchestra at the age of 14, followed two years later by a New York Philharmonic debut. Between the ages of 10 and 20, Fleisher studied with Schnabel, inheriting the salient features of Schnabel's approach to music. He attracted international attention after winning the Queen Elisabeth of Belgium competition in 1952. In the mid-1960s, medical problems affected Fleisher's right hand, forcing him to confine his musical activity to the left-hand literature and to conducting and teaching. He has been a sought-after teacher at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore since 1959. In recent years he has been able to resume a certain amount of two-handed performances. Fleisher's recordings of concertos by Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart, Grieg, Schumann and Ravel have been mainstays of the catalog for many years.
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