celebrates the life, work of pianist Lili Kraus
internationally renowned pianist and former faculty member
was remembered this weekend by an overflow crowd at PepsiCo
Through video clippings and classical piano pieces, pianist
Madame Lili Kraus came to life Sunday to celebrate what
would have been her 100th birthday.
“I am just overwhelmed,” said Jo Boatright, co-founder
of the Walden Piano Quartet and Voices of Change in Dallas.
“It brought tears to my eyes.”Sunday’s concert featured
some of Kraus’s favorite pieces by Mozart, Franz Schubert
and Béla Bartók. Boatright and José Feghali, a 1985 Cliburn
gold medalist, performed solos. Dale Fundling, a graduate
of the TCU School of Music and a teacher at the Mozarteum
in Salzburg, Austria, joined Boatright for a Mozart performance.
The celebration also featured video clippings of Kraus’s
live performances, including her critically acclaimed
concert of the 25 Mozart concertos.
“She was a real unique soul,” Boatright said. “She lived
Born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1903, Kraus began studying
piano at the age of 6. Throughout her life, she performed
on six continents and continued touring until 1981, just
five years before her death. Kraus came to TCU in 1962
to serve on the first jury of the Van Cliburn International
Piano Competition. She returned again in 1967 to join
the faculty at the School of Music where she was artist-in-residence
and professor of piano until 1981.
Feghali, current artist-in-residence, performed in the
second half of the program. He said Kraus’s music served
to inspire the early days of his musical career. “My teachers
in Brazil highly admired Madame Kraus' work,” Feghali
said. “I had the opportunity to hear some of her recordings
very early on, which were quite inspirational.” Taiko
Pelick, a freshman piano performance major, said she attended
Sunday’s performance out of curiosity and admiration.
“I really didn’t know much about Lili Kraus,” Pelick said,
“but I wanted to know more.”
The Lili Kraus Centennial Celebration filled PepsiCo Recital
Hall and left several audience members standing.
Dale Fundling (bottom left) and Jo Boatright perform a
Mozart sonata for a packed house Sunday afternoon in PepsiCo
Recital Hall in rememberance of former TCU faculty member