To my second mom, Marietta Orlov, Rest in peace.

November 8th, 2020 § 3 comments


I always used to call Marietta Orlov, my piano teacher, my second mom. She was the most important person in my artistic life – everything I am as a musician, she had a hand in it. I cannot begin to tell you how much she gave me and all of the things that she taught me and helped me discover. I am so glad to be among the hundreds and hundreds of people she touched; her inimitable (yet often imitated) singing, her compassionate insight and joy will live on in us and in all the people we go on to work with. She taught me how to think for myself, and how to teach creatively and what music, the discussion and learning and sharing of music, should be about.

When I was auditioning for music schools, and getting rejected by most, she saw something in me that I think only she could really see. She often joked that she saw some talent in me, and a lot of laziness. She told me that she was not going to allow me to be lazy anymore, even if it meant giving me two lessons a week, even during the summers. And that\’s what she did, for five straight years. (For which she never allowed me to pay her for.)

I don\’t think that what I became as an artist was anything that either of us would have predicted, but I suppose that\’s one of the amazing things about her teaching – she didn\’t want you to be anything specific, she didn\’t have an Orlov \”sound\” or \”aesthetic\” – she just wanted to you figure out how to figure it out, and not be too, too barbaric or ridiculous along the way. \”Okay – well, if that\’s what you\’re going to do, would you consider this…\”

So goodbye, mom. I am so happy that you managed to lead such an incredible life, and infect so many of us by example and through your wonderful, innigster, heartful teaching. Always with love.

§ 3 Responses to To my second mom, Marietta Orlov, Rest in peace."

  • Sandy Wynia Katz says:

    Greg I’m so sorry for your loss. She sounds like she was an amazing woman who has left an indelible legacy. May you and all of her beloved ones be comforted. And May her memory be for a blessing.

  • Lynda Metelsky says:

    Marietta has tragically slipped away from us… firstly as a great human being who affected all of us in such worldly ways, and then as a great musician who had artistic insights beyond those that we usually come into contact with. Her kindness, generosity, sensitivity and perspective will be greatly missed. Good bye Marietta and thank you for everything that made my life richer and more beautiful.

  • Élise Desjardins says:

    I am a former student of hers, post graduate, back in 1985…. I was sent to her after master at Indiana so she could help me. I owe her my humble piano career as an accompanist her in Montreal. Three years with her, she gave me so much… no time limits, 3 hours of lessons because I was coming from Montreal to see her…. what a teacher!!!! Always in her studio, helping students. I am turning 60 this year and she is still my inspiration. I share my sorrow with you

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