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An English piano master fades away

James Gibb, who played several times at the BBC Proms and was a close friend of the composer Alan Rawsthorne, has died, aged 95.

He taught at the Purcell School and went on to become head of keyboard studies at the Guildhall and a judge at the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow.

Funeral arrangements here.

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  1. Mark Stratford says:

    == played several times at the BBC Proms

    Yes, 7 times in fact. Sir Malcolm Sargent obviously liked him :

  2. I had the honour of knowing JImmy when I was resident piano tech. at the Guildhall. Professors can be lofty creatures but no-one was ever nicer, more gracious & courteous than Jimmy. He would stop in at my workshop to ask how things were & share wonderful stories of his life, a lovely man & great teacher.

  3. Extremely sad to hear about the loss of James Gibb. I feel very lucky for having had him as my piano teacher while studying at the Guildhall School of Music. He was a great man and a great professor! He was greatly respected and I doubt there was any person on earth, who could have had any negative feelings about him.

    Apart from all the memories I have from our piano lessons, which were SO useful to me, ( I always felt so naked when playing in front of him, cos, he was working so much on the smallest detail, he was so meticulous about the perfect legato playing, and it was always a unique experience whenever he sat on the piano and demonstrated to me, what he was looking for) ,there are a few things connected with him in my mind, which I always remember and smile.

    He always had a very specific type of eraser on the top of his pencils. He LOVED them, and he kept telling that he finds them only in one shop in London, and he would be devastated, if they stopped selling them, since it’s the best way to prevent the pencils fall inside the piano.

    I also remember I used to go sometimes for lesson to his flat in Camden Town. He lived on the very top floor, no lift. And I always thought, if at the age of 85 he can walk up and down the stairs everyday day with so much ease, he will live long….

    Thank you Jimmy for all you gave to the world and to me.
    Farewell! Rest in peace.

  4. graham buckland says:

    RIP Jimmy. Thank you for all those inspiring lessons in Flat K. Give my love to George.

  5. Keir Williams says:

    RIP Jimmy Gibb,

    A great family friend of my grandfather Edward Williams (composer), and he always had such an interesting story to tell. Such a great pianist !

  6. I had the great joy of meeting Jimmy when I was 11 years old and a pupil of the Yehudi Menuhin School in 1969 at the National Junior Piano Competition in London. This began a very long friendship and so I had the honour to continue my studies with him at the GSMD in 1975. Jimmy helped me through the burn out and trauma of having been a student at the Yehudi Menuhin School for seven years and all that that entailed.

    He was always a very kind, incredibly generous and gifted human being and a wonderful teacher with a wicked sense of humour and great depth of musicianship and understanding. He was also a true artist and pianist of the highest calibre and integrity.

    I shall miss him terribly.
    I remember many occasions sitting in Jimmy’s very tiny kitchen in his studio flat top floor Regents Park Rd….those were the days.

    May he be at peace and in love now and in music without beginning or end.
    Thank you for being my best beloved teacher.

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