Leschetizky, Theodor [Leszetycki, Teodor]
- James Methuen-Campbell
(b Łańcut, Galicia, June 22, 1830; d Dresden, Nov 14, 1915). Polish pianist, teacher and composer. His father held the position of music teacher to a minor branch of the Potocki family at Łańcut in Austrian Poland, and was his son's first teacher. Leschetizky made his début at the age of nine in Lemberg playing a Czerny concertino (the conductor was Franz Xaver Mozart) and shortly after this the family moved to Vienna, where he became a pupil of Czerny himself. From 1842 to 1848 Leschetizky undertook tours as a virtuoso, but also studied law and had lessons in counterpoint from Sechter. In September 1852 he went to St Petersburg and played before Nicholas I, and then lived in the city for the next 26 years. Having been a piano teacher from his teenage years, he greatly expanded this activity during his sojourn in Russia, while not neglecting his career as a pianist. He became director of music at the court of the Grand Duchess Helen, sister-in-law of the Tsar, and it was under her patronage that Anton Rubinstein founded the St Petersburg Conservatory in ...