Pianist, Teacher and Author
Stephen Siek is the author of a highly acclaimed biography of Britain's greatest piano teacher, England's Piano Sage: The Life and Teachings of Tobias Matthay, and his most recent book (containing an essay by David Berry) is the highly praised A Dictionary for the Modern Pianist, published by Rowman & Littlefield in November 2016. In the past 20 years, he has given numerous courses at OCONs, including surveys of Chopin, Schumann, Rachmaninoff, and Tchaikovsky. He has concertized extensively throughout North America and in 1986 he performed the 24 preludes of Rachmaninoff in New York's Lincoln Center. He made his London debut in 1988. His numerous articles have appeared in such journals as the American Music Teacher, the Piano Quarterly, and International Piano, and in the summer 1993 issue of American Music he presented new research concerning musical figures active in post-Revolutionary Philadelphia. He is also a contributor to the Revised New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians and the new edition of the Grove Dictionary of American Music. In 2021, Emeritus Voices, a journal published by Arizona State University, commissioned his article on the World's Columbian Exposition, "Immersed in a Schism: Chicago’s Exposition and the Birth of Modern American Culture," and the University has now made it available online here. To date he has annotated nearly two dozen classical piano CDs for major labels, including Garrick Ohlsson's highly praised survey of the works of American composer Charles Griffes for Hyperion, and retrospective tributes of Andor Foldes, Myra Hess, Wilhelm Kempff, Ruth Slenczynska, and many others. His own acclaimed recording of The Philadelphia Sonatas of Alexander Reinagle (c.1750-1809) was released on the Titanic label in 1998. He holds the B. Mus. and the M. Mus. degrees from the University of Maryland and a Ph.D. from the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati. In May of 2019, he was named an Honorary Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in London, and he currently serves as a Faculty Associate at ASU, where he directs the Emeritus College Academy for Continued Learning.