Christian Steiner
piano duo | Worldwide
 
Biography
 
Pianists Misha and Cipa Dichter, who met at The Juilliard School as students of the legendary Rosina Lhevinne, made their first joint appearance at the Hollywood Bowl in 1972, four years after their marriage. Since then, the Dichters have performed in recital and with major orchestras throughout the world. They have brought to the concert stage many previously neglected works of the two-piano and piano-four-hand repertoires, including the world premiere of Robert Starer's Concerto for Two Pianos and most recently, the world premiere of the first movement of Shostakovich's two-piano version of Symphony No. 13 (Babi Yar).*

Misha and Cipa Dichter's North American engagements have included recitals in all of the major cities in the United States and Canada, as well as appearances with the symphonies of Baltimore, Chicago, Cincinnati, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, and Seattle. Abroad, the Dichters have performed in the music capitals of France, Germany, Holland, Spain, and Switzerland.

The Dichters perform regularly at many leading summer festivals, including Aspen, Mostly Mozart, Ravinia, the Hollywood Bowl, Caramoor, and the Mann Center. Following a concert by the Dichters at New York's Mostly Mozart Festival, The New York Times declared: "One was struck not only by the synchronism of their musical impulses, but also by the vigor and elegance of the execution."

The Dichters' first recording--a three-CD album of the complete piano works for four hands by Mozart plus four-hand arrangements by Busoni and Grieg--was recently released by Musical Heritage Society. American Record Guide called the recording "an unmitigated delight," and the Washington Post commented that the music on this album is "Witty, melodious and superbly polished. So is the Dichters' performance." Gramophone magazine praised "the Dichters' direct and uncluttered interpretations" and their "exuberant rhythmic drive." Music Web International named the album a "Recording of the Year" for 2005. The Dichters first began playing Mozart together when they were students at Juilliard in the 1960s, and it was Mozart's E-flat double concerto they played at the Hollywood Bowl in their first joint appearance.

Now in the fifth decade of a distinguished international career, Misha Dichter traces his musical heritage to the two great pianistic traditions of the 20th century: the Russian Romantic School as personified by Rosina Lhevinne, and the German Classical approach that was passed on to him by Aube Tzerko, a pupil of Artur Schnabel. Mr. Dichter reveals this dual legacy in his solo recitals, chamber music performances, and appearances with virtually all of the world's major orchestras, performing the grand virtuoso compositions of Liszt, Rachmaninoff, and Tchaikovsky, as well as music from the central German-Viennese repertoire--works by Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms--that embody more introspective structural and spiritual qualities. His performances and recordings of music ranging from Mozart through Stravinsky have made him a favorite of audiences around the world.

Born in 1945 in Shanghai, where his Polish parents had fled at the outbreak of World War II, Mr. Dichter came to Los Angeles with his family at the age of two and began his piano studies a few years later. While still a student at Juilliard, he launched his international career with a stunning triumph at the 1966 Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow.

Cipa Dichter was born in Brazil of Polish-Russian parents and had her first piano lessons at the age of six. She made her professional debut at 16 with the Symphony Orchestra of Brazil and came to the United States to study at The Juilliard School shortly thereafter. She is very much involved in the S.L.E. Foundation's Women's Leadership Council, a women's health initiative whose mission is to advocate for increased research to unravel the mysteries of lupus.
Misha and Cipa Dichter recently taped an interview and performance for ArtsPass, the arts & entertainment online video network.


*To see this performance, visit http://www.mjhnyc.org/safrahall/visit_safra_podcasts.htm

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