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The 'Golden Age' of the piano, beginning at the end of the 18th century as the pianoforte replaced the harpsichord for concerts, reached a zenith in the 19th century with the great popular success of public performances featuring the new instrument, most notably the virtuoso solo recital as introduced by Franz Liszt. Much of the music in the repertoire today was written in this period (dubbed 'Romantic') in a vast outpouring of inspiration and effects out of reach till then through the physical limitations of the older keyboard instruments and the stylistic constraints of the Baroque and Classical Periods.
Elizabeth Powell's artistry is founded in this era, by teachers who were themselves part of its late history, with direct, personal links through their own teachers back to some of its early titans, Beethoven and Brahms, Chopin and Liszt, to legendary performers and teachers Czerny and Leschetitsky.
There can be few artists alive today who can trace such a pedigree. Her students become initiates in the rare line of descent that she brings to them, taking the flame kept burning by their predecessors to light the torch that they, in their turn, will bear for the mastery passed down to them through her.
© 2007 Elizabeth Powell