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Fanny Waterman, Doyenne of the Leeds Piano Competition, Dies at 100

Fanny Waterman, Doyenne of the Leeds Piano Competition, Dies at 100
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Fanny Waterman, Doyenne of the Leeds Piano Competition, Dies at 100

Fanny Waterman, Doyenne of the Leeds Piano Competitors, Dies at 100

Ms. Waterman was born on March 22, 1920, in Leeds, the second youngster of Mary (Behrman) Waterman and Meyer Waterman (the household title was initially Wasserman). Her mom was an English-born daughter of Russian immigrant Jews. Her father, born in Ukraine, was a talented jeweler.

Although the household struggled financially, her dad and mom got here up with sufficient cash to offer younger Fanny with piano classes as soon as her expertise turned clear. She practiced on an outdated upright piano and studied with a neighborhood trainer, whereas her brother, Harry, took violin classes.

At 18, she turned a scholarship scholar on the Royal Faculty of Music in London, finding out with Cyril Smith. She carried out Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23 in 1941 with the Leeds Symphony Orchestra, the identical yr she met Dr. de Keyser, then a younger medical scholar, whom she would marry in 1944. With the beginning of her first youngster, Robert, in 1950, Ms. Waterman determined to dedicate herself to educating.

Robert de Keyser survives her, as do one other son, Paul, a violin trainer, and 6 granddaughters. Her husband died in 2001.

As soon as the Leeds Competitors bought going, Dr. de Keyser turned intimately concerned, each in recommending lists of repertory and in writing up guidelines. “He was a health care provider, however his data of music was second to no person,” Ms. Waterman mentioned in 2010.

In 1966 Ms. Waterman and her husband purchased Woodgarth, a powerful eight-bedroom Victorian home in Oakwood, a suburb of Leeds. She stored two effective pianos in its spacious drawing room, the place she taught, made plans for the competitors and presided over full of life musical soirees that included visitors just like the composer Benjamin Britten and the tenor Peter Pears, in addition to Prime Minister Edward Heath. Ms. Waterman offered the home this yr.

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