(January 28, 1887 – December 20, 1982) was a famous
Polish-American pianist, best known for his performances of Chopin
and his championing of Spanish music.
born in Łódź to a Jewish family, and studied in Warsaw.
He made his debut in Berlin in 1900, followed by appearances in
Germany and Poland and further study with Paderewski. In 1904, he
went to Paris, where he met the composers Ravel, Dukas, and
Saint-Saëns, and the violinist Jacques Thibaud.
his New York debut at Carnegie Hall in 1906, and thereafter toured
the United States, Austria, Italy, and Russia. In 1912, he made
his London debut.
During World War
I Rubinstein lived mainly in London, accompanying the violinst Eugčne
Ysa˙e. From 1916 to 1917, he toured Spain and South America,
developing an enthusiasm for the music of Granados, Albéniz,
Villa-Lobos, and de Falla. In 1932 he withdrew from concert life
for several years to work on his technique and repertory.
During World War
II, Rubinstein lived in the United States and became a naturalized
citizen in 1946. He retired from the stage in 1976, as his
eyesight was rapidly deteriorating.
known as a soloist, Rubinstein was also an outstanding chamber
musician, partnering with Szeryng, Heifetz, Piatigorsky, the
Guarneri Quartet. In addition to Chopin, he also recorded the
music of Beethoven, Brahms, Schubert, Schumann, and Dvořák.
married in 1932 to Aniela Mlynarska, daughter of conductor Emil
Mlynarski. They had four children: their daughter Eva married
William Sloane Coffin; their son John Rubinstein is an actor.
Though he never divorced, he carried on a series of affairs during
his marriage and left his wife for another woman near the end of
in Geneva, Switzerland, in 1982 at age 95.