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Moura Lympany Collection

Photograph of Moura Lympany, pianistMary Johnstone (Moura Lympany) was born in Cornwall, England on August 18, 1916. She received her first piano lessons from her mother at age 3. At 7, she was sent to school in Belgium, where she studied piano, violin and voice before proceeding to the Liège Conservatory of Music. She made her debut at age 12 in Harrogate, England, performing the Mendelssohn G Minor Piano Concerto. Her subsequent studies were with Paul Weingarten in Vienna, and with Mathilde Verne and Tobias Matthay in England. Lympany's concert career was firmly established in 1938, when she won Second Prize at the Ysaye Piano Competition, Emil Gilels being the First Prize winner. Moura Lympany enjoyed a career as a recitalist and soloist for over 60 years. She performed regularly in her native England, in Scotland and the United States, and she made several tours of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Moura Lympany was one of several pianists (including Myra Hess and Benno Moiseiwitsch) who performed frequently in England during WWII, and after celebrating 50 years on the concert platform in 1979, she was awarded the CBE (Commander of the British Empire) in 1980. Lympany had a large repertoire which featured standard works, but also included Concertos by contemporary British composers such as Richard Arnell, Cyril Scott, Alan Rawsthorne and John Ireland. She was the first western pianist to tour the Soviet Union after WWII, and she earned a reputation as an interpreter of Russian music. She performed Khachaturian's Concerto under his baton, and she was the first pianist to record the complete Rachmaninoff Preludes. Her extensive discography consists of recordings for British Decca, HMV, and Erato. Later in life, Lympany curtailed her concert engagements to oversee her wine vineyards in Rasiguères, France, where she also established a festival of music and wine. She gave her last public concerts in 1996, and she died in France on March 28, 2005.


SERIES I - Performance Files

SERIES II - Subject Files

SERIES III - Correspondence

SERIES IV - Photographs

SERIES V - Scores

SERIES VI - Audio / Visual