P1190. WILLIAM MASSELOS, w.Pierre Monteux Cond. NYPO: Concerto #2 in g (Saint-Saëns), Live Performance, 8 March, 1959, Carnegie Hall; WILLIAM MASSELOS, w.Guarneri Quartet: Piano Quartet #2 in E-flat (Dvoràk), Live Performance, 12 Nov., 1971, Metropolitan Museum, New York. (Canada) St Laurent Studio YSL T-294. [Never previously issued.] Transfers by Yves St Laurent.
“Masselos was born in 1920 and died in 1992. His main teacher was Carl Friedburg, a pupil of Clara Schumann, and he was thus steeped in the German tradition, but advocacy for new music was a huge part of his artistry and career. Norbeck, Peters, and Ford (www.norpete.com), which sells this label, indicates that the recording came from Masselos’ own collection.
Yves St. Laurent (no relationship with the designer) is a company dedicated to finding performances that really merit public exposure and preservation, and to doing it with the highest possible audio quality. They accomplish this successfully.”
- Henry Fogel, FANFARE
“In musical circles, Mr. Masselos was one of the most respected pianists of his time....‘He always was one of the better American pianists’, Harold C. Schonberg wrote in THE NEW YORK TIMES after Mr. Masselos' marathon concert [11 Dec., 1969, Carnegie Hall, (our catalogue #P1185)]. ‘Now he has developed into a great one. He plays in a rather unostentatious manner, and that may count against him on the circuit, where pianists put on a big show. But he has everything. To look over some of the virtues: tone, technique, musicianship, style, imagination, sensitivity. That will do for a start’.
William Masselos was born in Niagara Falls, N.Y., on 11 Aug., 1920. He studied at the Juilliard School, where his principal teacher was Carl Friedberg. He made his début in 1939.
He was a regular participant in the WNYC American Music Festivals from 1946 through the mid-50's. He made his début with the New York Philharmonic in 1952, playing the Brahms Concerto in d minor under the direction of Dimitri Mitropoulos. He worked with many conductors, among them Pierre Monteux and Leonard Bernstein. Although many thought of Mr. Masselos as a new-music specialist, he never eschewed the classics; ‘I approach modern music in exactly the same way I approach Brahms or Schumann or Chopin’, he said in 1971."
- THE NEW YORK TIMES, 24 Oct., 1992