CURRICULUM VITAE ALBERT BRUSSEE
Albert Brussee was born in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands, in 1946. As a student of Jaap Spaanderman, Danièle Dechenne and, for modern music, Ton Hartsuiker at the Amsterdam Muzieklyceum he gained his diploma in solo performance in 1971 with two distinctions and he concluded his studies there with the Prix d’Excellence (1974), the most prestigious music award in Holland at that time.
From 1971 to 1981 Brussee performed regularly as a pianist, with several radio broadcasts to his name. In the 1980’s, suffering from focal dystonia, he withdrew from the podium and turned more to teaching; he was a teacher of piano and of keyboard history at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. From 1985 to 2010 he was responsible for the piano students of the internationally highly esteemed jazz department there (technical training and classical repertoire). In 2003 Albert Brussee was a jury member of Les Rencontres Internationales des jeunes pianistes in Namur and in 2005 of the 7th International Franz Liszt Competition in Utrecht.
As editor of both the Piano Bulletin of the European Piano Teachers Association (EPTA – The Netherlands), and the Journal of the Franz Liszt Circle, he has written a great number of articles, also in British, German and American journals. After the reconstruction and editing of early versions of Liszt’s Harmonies poétiques et religieuses, about twenty piano pieces published for the first time, Albert Brussee has gained a good name internationally as a Liszt expert. In 2004 the method of the famous piano pedagogue Cornelius Berkhout, De Kunst van het Pianospel, saw the light of day; until then this important Dutch piano method had been available only in a handful of copies taken from the typescript. In 2008 Brussee edited an unknown sonata in E-flat major (W65/7, H16) by C.P.E. Bach, to be followed two years later by Three Sketches from Sketchbook N6 of Franz Liszt. Both of these works were first publications.
Additionally, Albert Brussee composes – in the past partly in collaboration with the late Max Prick van Wely – piano music in Romantic style, in which a certain influence of the ‘light muse’ is recognizable. An overview is to be seen under ‘SHEET MUSIC’.
Over the past few years Brussee has begun to perform more frequently again, in recitals, lecture-recitals and lectures. In addition to concerts in the Netherlands (Pulchri Studio, Felix Meritis, Cristofori), he has played in Rome, Budapest (Liszt Academy of Music) and Berlin (Hochschule der Künste). In the summer of 2004 he performed successfully during the Regent Hall Festival in London. A CD of his own compositions, Between Dream and Despair (1994), was well received. Two years later, on the occasion of his 50th birthday, Brussee released a compact disc with early recordings from the years 1974–1981. His recordings, in 1997 and 2001 respectively, of the above-mentioned early versions of Liszt’s Harmonies poétiques et religieuses were most favourably reviewed, both in the Netherlands and abroad. In 2007 his fifth CD appeared, with works by C.P.E. Bach, Grotthuss, Chopin, Liszt and Debussy, to be followed 5 years later by a CD of Romantic piano music at the interface of ‘salon’ and ‘concert hall’.
Albert Brussee was for many years chairman of the Royal Dutch Union of Musicians (KNTV), Amsterdam branch. From 1994 to 2002 he was secretary of the European Piano Teachers Association – The Netherlands. In addition, he was chairman of the board of the EPTA Documentation Centre (EDC) from 1997 until 2009, and from 2005 up to and including 2012 secretary of the Franz Liszt Kring (Franz Liszt Circle).