Born in 1930, Paul Jacobs was an American pianist, who was best known for his performances of twentieth-century music. He gained wide recognition for his work with early keyboards, performing frequently with Baroque ensembles. Jacobs was the New York Philharmonic’s official pianist and harpsichordist until his death in 1983. He had a long collaboration with the American composer Elliott Carter, recording most of Carter’s solo piano music and ensemble works with keyboard. He also gave first performances of music by various composers including George Crumb, Luciano Berio, Hans Werner Henze, Olivier Eugene Prosper Charles Messiaen and Roger Huntington Sessions, and commissioned work by Frederic Rzewski. Jacobs performed as one of the participating pianists at Bosendorfer Festival in the winter of 1976, which was a concert that served as a benefit for The Kitchen, conveying the breadth of expression possible with piano.
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