Musica Amata

berta Marantz

Berta Solomonovna Marantz  (1907 - 1998) was born in Proskurov (Ukraine) into a Jewish family. Her primary education was home tuition. This was the time when the teachers noticed her musical abilities. They advised her that the girl would benefit from a proper musical education. This is why Berta went to Odessa in the 1920 es.

 At that time Berta Reingbald who was regarded as a wonderful Piano Tutor worked in Odessa Conservatoire. She was the first teacher to coach Berta Marantz. Emil Gilels who became one of the most eminent pianists of XXth century studied with B.Reingbald at the same time as Berta Marantz and they became life- long friends.

After the years spent in Odessa and after few solo recitals the teachers advised Berta to continue her Piano studies in Moscow Conservatoire with Felix Blumenfeld who was a student of N. Rimsky- Korsakov. As Blumenfeld didn't  have vacancies for new students at that time he sent Berta to the Piano Class  of his nephew Heinrich Neuhaus

In 1937 Berta Marantz won the Prize for best performance of Beethoven in the Soviet Union Performing Competition. After the graduation she and her husband Semion Benditsky went to Sverdlovsk (Ekaterinburg of the present day) and started the Piano Department at the Conservatoire set up by her teacher H. Neuhaus in 1934.

 In the mid 50s Semion Benditsky and Berta Marantz who divorced after which he went to Saratov and worked there for the rest of his life bringing on many famous musicians and Berta went to Gorky (Nizhny Novgorod) and started teaching at the Conservatoire. Berta created her own teaching methods based on economy and precision of the hand movements which resulted in producing a nice tone. Her methods allowed the students to achieve a very high level of performance equal to the quality of the Moscow School. Berta was known to all the musicians in the Soviet Union and Europe. Her name was seen as a special brand of Gorky Conservatoire. Berta became the Head of Piano Department in Gorky Conservatoire in 1954 and it took a very short time for the young Gorky Piano School to become one of the best Piano Schools in the country. 

Usually at least once a year she gave solo recitals or played with an orchestra. Her repertoire included huge amount of piano music from all styles and epochs. But her main strength was the music by Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven.

Berta Marantz taught and performed to a very old age. She passed away in 1998 at the age of 91.


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