Notes and Editorial Reviews
Born July 10, 1923, in Tiflis (later named Tbilisi), Georgia, Rudolf Kerer (also spelled Kehrer) was descended from Swabian immigrants and grew up within the Pietist community in Georgia. He began piano studies at six, and by twelve qualified for the gifted class at the Tbilisi Conservatory. In 1938, he performed in public Tchaikovsky's first Piano Concerto. In October 1941, Kerer and his surviving family were deported as enemy aliens to Kazakhstan. Without a piano, he devised a “table piano,” a table on which he painted a keyboard, so he could “practice.” By 1949-at 26-he had given up his dream of a musical career but in 1954, in Uzbekistan, he was accepted at the state conservatory as a student in the class of Zelma Slonim-Tamarkina. Three years later, Kerer graduated, and began teaching piano in Tashkent. Four years later, in 1961, he competed in the second All-Union Competition in Moscow and won the first prize. Following this winning, Kerer became a professor at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory. He performed throughout the Soviet Union but was not allowed to concertize abroad. In 1988, at 65, he was allowed to serve on the jury of the Beethoven competition in Vienna. He remained there to teach at the Musikhochschule for eight years. Later, he moved to live in Zurich, where he died on October 29, 2013. This release hears him performing some of music’s most beautiful piano concertos and sonatas.