Quatre morceaux pour piano: Op. 36; par Théodore Leschetizky; Hambourg: D. Rather (ca. 1890) / public domain; source: Biblioteka Narodowa (Polona)
(22 June 1830 – 14 November 1915) pianist, teacher and composer, born in Łańcut, died in Dresden. He was initially taught by his father Józef Leszetycki, a teacher of music in the estate of Count Alfred Potocki.
Teodor Leszetycki taught the piano from Carl Czerny’s model that he himself modified. Among his many pupils were such outstanding pianists as Wincenty Adamowski, Alexander Brailowsky, Ryszard Byk, Antoni Dobkiewicz, Bolesław Domaniewski, Seweryn Eisenberger, Ignacy Friedman, Ossip Gabrilowitsch, Wojciech Gawroński, Alfred Grüenfeld, Mark Hamburg, Mieczysław Horszowski, Katarzyna Jaczynowska, Franciszek Łukasiewicz, Henryk Melcer, Benno Moiseiwitsch, Helena Morsztyn, Elly Ney, Ignacy Jan Paderewski, Włodzimierz Pachulski, August Radwan, Artur Schnabel, Paulina Szalitówna, Józef Śliwiński, Ignacy Tiegerman and Paul Wittgenstein.
Leszetycki composed more than 50 works (the exact number is not known as some of them still remain in manuscript), including operas, such as Die Brüder von Marco and Die erste Falte, and the Piano Concerto in C minor op. 9. He also wrote a few hundred piano miniatures (e.g. etudes, mazurkas, impromptus, morceaux, preludes, arabesques and nocturnes), which he frequently put together into cycles. Some of his pianola (mechanical) recordings have survived to our times – we can still hear him perform the Nocturne in D flat major op. 27 No 1 and the Polonaise in B flat major op. 71 No 2 by Fryderyk Chopin, the Fantasia in C minor by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, works by Léo Delibes, Stephen Heller and several of his own compositions. There is also a recently found recording, made on an Edison cylinder phonograph, of Leszetycki’s voice (Vienna, 17 January 1907) expressing, in German, his own artistic creed:
"There is no life without art and no art without life. I am not going to conquer human hearts by passageways or rapid thirds, but by a noble song, clear and strong, delicate and soft. Human heart are not conquered by passageways or thirds but rather by the beauty of the song, the depth of feeling and the nobility of tone".
Sources: www.culture.pl, Małgorzata Kosińska, Polish Music Information Center, Polish Composers’ Union, October 2006.