Stecher & Horowitz
Internationally acknowledged as one of the most distinguished duo-pianists of their generation, Melvin Stecher and Norman Horowitz have sparked a major revival of interest in the two-piano concert. In 1951, these two young soloists merged their individual talents to create a unique performing duo. For almost five decades they a afforded audiences the world over an unforgettable musical experience.
Still in their teens, the two New York born pianists had already made impressive solo debuts. In 1954, the debut of Stecher and Horowitz in their home town took place in New York’s best-known entertainment house. They were the first duo-piano attraction to be engaged at Radio City Music Hall. For the following five consecutive years, they toured the United States and Canada playing 50 solo recitals plus 60 concerts as guest artists with the Roger Wagner Chorale. They also toured Central and South America under State Department sponsorship.
Stecher and Horowitz have won critical acclaim and audience bravos throughout the United States, Canada, Central and South America, Europe, Israel, Japan, and Australia. The distinguished American composer Walter Piston dedicated his Concerto for Two Pianos and Orchestra to the duo- pianists, who premiered the work in 1964. The unanimous enthusiasm for the concerto prompted Dr. Piston to produce a second version for Two Pianos Soli, which Stecher and Horowitz performed in more than 500 recitals in the United States and Europe.
In 1968, their debut tour of Europe included Salzburg, Munich, Berlin, London, Copenhagen, Brussels, Stockholm and Amsterdam. The superb artistry of the two-piano team was rapturously received by audiences and lavishly praised by critics who compared them to the legendary duo- piano team of Busoni and Petri. As the leading Berlin newspaper Der Tagesspiegel phrased it: “For the fans of the piano it was a feast, an ensemble such as is hardly achieved in Old Europe these days.”
Noted performers and music educators, Stecher and Horowitz founded the Stecher and Horowitz School of the Arts in 1960. In 1975, the school in Cedarhurst, New York, became a non-profit educational institution for students of all ages and educational backgrounds. It has been highly regarded as a center for the encouragement of creative potential through its innovative learning programs. In addition to having served as educational consultants to the publishing firm of G. Schirmer, the duo-pianists have written and edited the Stecher and Horowitz Piano Library, a comprehensive teaching series. The scope of the library ranges from beginning piano material for the young student to the highly respected college text, Keyboard Strategies. Stecher and Horowitz are equally regarded for their unique piano clinics, a series of workshops for piano teachers which they have given throughout North America, Japan and Australia.
Melvin Stecher and Norman Horowitz were honored by the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) in 1988 for “Distinguished Service to America,” and were also the Convention Artists. In 2012, they received the MTNA Award for Leadership, the third recipients in the 136 year history of MTNA.
Stecher and Horowitz, dedicated to education and The Music Teachers National Association, have established the MTNA-STECHER AND HOROWITZ TWO PIANO COMPETITION, (ages 19-29) and the POWER OF INNOVATION AWARD (ages 35 and under). These two significant prizes emanate from the diversified career of the duo-pianists from their late teens to the present.
An autobiography of the duo, entitled Stecher and Horowitz, Duo-Pianists: An Unequaled Journey of Keyboard Legends, was published in 2015. In 2016, Stecher and Horowitz were initiated into Sigma Alpha Iota as “National Arts Associates.” This is the highest honor SAI bestows for distinguished contribution to the arts.
Messrs. Stecher and Horowitz are as passionate about their fourth career, the Stecher and Horowitz Foundation’s New York International Piano Competition, and its professional programs for young artists, including the Young Artists Series. In all these endeavors, the virtuosity and versatility of Stecher and Horowitz have earned them an unrivaled reputation and the greatest respect in the music world.