Today was a very special day for me. On of my biggest musical inspirations has celebrated her 90th birthday. Nada Brissenden did not only introduce the Suzuki method in Australia together with her husband Harold, she also was my high school music teacher back in the days when I lived in a migrant camp in Wollongong. Nada has not taught me the piano, however when my father died in the camp, she supported our family by giving my mother a job cleaning her house and she gave me free lessons in music theory so I could go and audition at the @sydneycon
I have known this wonderful lady for 60 years. She is still teaching and the output of wonderful musicians that her work has created is staggering.
Thank you @abbotsleigh for hosting this special concert. We need to celebrate heroes and heroines like Nada!!
Eva @clevarish found this little treasure for me for my #birthday today on @marktplaats and I couldn't be happier. You see the name who composed this little #piano piece? 🎹"G. Schellekens"🎹 The "G" stands for "Gerard" and this man was my #grandfather
I do have a few little pieces by him but I didn't know "Souvenir de Thalia" ❤️
What kind of #piano#professor would I be and not visit the @juilliardschool 😊...and how wonderful it was to see so many former @sydneycon students there (even a player who used to play for Judy Bailey's #jazz band. He was there at the time when they played at my #wedding!). I met the wonderful David Dubal whose conversations with #Horowitz I have read so many times. He is a wonderful man and we immediately had a connection. And then we met the legendary Jerome Lowenthal who at 85 is still teaching a full class. Eva @clevarish were lucky enough to be present at his weekly group class where his students play if they like to and at the end have dinner together in the studio. I might steal this brilliant idea when I am back in #Sydney 😁🎶 #juilliard#juilliardschool#gerardwillems#playsomewillems#nyx#newyork
I am at LAX, reading the Australian news and am utterly said to learn that Bill Leak has passed away far too early. He was the one who designed the cover for my "Mozartrois" recording of the complete #Mozart#Piano#trios. I taught one of his sons for a while who I remember to be a very talented and creative boy.
My heart ❤️ goes out to Bill's family and friends. This is very unexpected and sad... Rest in Peace, Bill.
I am in #sanfrancisco now and had a wonderful evening with an old friend. William Corbett-Jones came to the @sydneycon in the 90's for six months to fill in for another dear friend, Albert Landa. I have not seen Bill since I came to San Francisco in 2001 when I was preparing for my first #Beethoven recordings. So wonderful to see this man and to share some #memories, #food and of course #music 🎶
...and here I am! At @ucla! Due to a few little delays there was no time to get to our accommodation and now I am on stage, preparing for a #lecture#recital after 15 hours on a plane without having had the chance to shower or change. Oh well... I am excited regardless! The hall is slowly filling with keen faces. Let's do this! #gerardwillems#ucla#losangeles#playsomewillems