Gyorgy Nicholas Sebok

Gyorgy Nicholas Sebok

Birth
Hungary
Death 11 Nov 1999 (aged 76)
Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana, USA
Burial Cremated, Ashes scattered, Specifically: Ashes scattered in Ernen, Switzerland
Memorial ID 47620400 · View Source
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Concert pianist and gifted teacher. His musical life spilled over into the rest of his life, and his life's experiences were tremendously influential on his musical ideas. He could best be described as the entire amassment of everything he had experienced in his life up to any given point within it. Everything this man experienced in life was a stimulation to his very existence. This included both the best and the worst of times.He thrived on the worst of experiences and turned them into an impetus for going on with life. His enormous intellect and curiosity about the interconnections of life's experiences allowed him to treat all experiences in a motivating way.
Even in his early years in Szeged, Hungary, he showed this enormous interest in the world around him. He was an avid reader who absorbed poetry, physiology, psychology, history, philosophy and other subjects as well. These formative years gave way to intense music study at the Liszt Academy in Budapest beginning in 1938. He came from the tradition of Bartok, Kodaly, Dohnanyi, and Leo Weiner. Weiner was his greatest and closest teacher-one to whom he payed ultimate respect. When he spoke of Weiner, he said, "He was like a pedal point, all the time, all the way. He taught me to hear".
The beginning of World War II ended his study at the Academy and began the worst of times for him. He was personally devastated by the war" He entered a time of extreme-self examination and emerged a different pianist and musician. Budapest had virtually been destroyed. He thought Paris was the answer at this point in his life. It proved not to be in the unsettling time after the war. He returned to Hungary only to find himself in the midst of a Russian occupation and the establishment of communism in his home country. In 1949,he became Professor of Piano at the Bela Bartok Conservatory in Budapest, but during the uprisings of 1956, he made his way back to Paris. This time he made Paris his home and became a part of the international musical life of the time. In 1957, he won the Grand Prix du Disque and began a performance career that developed over the years in regular solo and chamber music and appearances in most western European countries, Japan, South Africa, and North America.
From 1962 until his death in 1999, he was a member of the Piano faculty of the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, Bloomington Indiana, where he held the title of Distinguished Professor, the highest rank granted to any professor at the university. He held a guest professorship at the Hoshschule de Kunste in Berlin, The Toho-Gakuen School of Music in Japan, and the School of the Arts in Banff, Canada. He was the founder and director of his beloved "Ernen Musikdorf" and the Festival der Zukunft in Switzerland. He also gave regular masterclasses in Frances, Barcelona, Amsterdam, The Hague, Oregon, and Hungary.
He was such a unique teacher in so many ways, he seemed totally different from others. He had no "method." He would not dictate an interpretation. He certainly would not "spoon feed." He more like a "musical guide." He may have given some musical directions, but they were probably surrounded by some ideas in general- perhaps a reference to some other piece of music, perhaps other arts, some ideas about life, perhaps other disciplines. He may have intrigued you with the psychology of something or someone. Whatever it might be, he was guiding and he knew the final destination. What was important to him about music making, or art in general, may not have been the present music scene regarding competitions, careers, or other extraneous aspects of being a true musician. He did not feel he had all the answers, because he was always searching, always looking for an answer, always seeking a new direction. This quest, contagious as it might have been, opened the minds of those around him-his students, his musical colleagues, and his friends. He showed the way. This is what all admired and loved in their association with this great musician.


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  • Created by: marcella deckard
  • Added: 5 Feb 2010
  • Find a Grave Memorial 47620400
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Gyorgy Nicholas Sebok (22 Nov 1922–11 Nov 1999), Find a Grave Memorial no. 47620400, ; Maintained by marcella deckard (contributor 47170625) Cremated, Ashes scattered, who reports a Ashes scattered in Ernen, Switzerland.