Baltimore philanthropists Robert E. Meyerhoff and Rheda Becker have donated $1 million to establish the Leon Fleisher Studio Scholarship Fund, which will provide scholarships to piano students of renowned pianist and Peabody faculty artist Leon Fleisher.
"Leon Fleisher is, quite simply, one of the great musicians of our time," Meyerhoff says. "He attracts stellar pianistic talents to the Peabody Institute from all over the world. Rheda and I are delighted to make this gift to the Leon Fleisher Studio Fund, affording the opportunity for extraordinary young artists to study with Maestro Fleisher."
"I am inexpressibly touched by the faith and generosity of both Bob and Rheda," says Fleisher, a member of the Peabody faculty since 1959. "It is an enormous responsibility, and I will do everything that I can to prove worthy of their confidence."
André Watts, Nelita True, Peter Takács, Julian Martin, Alon Goldstein, Stephen Prutsman, Adam Golka, Yury Shadrin, Phillip Bush, Thomas Hecht, Enrico Elisi, and Sandra Shapiro are among the students Fleisher has taught at Peabody who have gone on to successful performing and teaching careers.
Meyerhoff and Becker have already given $1 million to the Leon Fleisher Scholars Fund, an endowment for undergraduate piano scholarships established in 2009 in celebration of Fleisher's 50th anniversary teaching at the conservatory. This new contribution brings their total support of Peabody to over $2 million.