Donald Isler is a classical pianist, piano teacher, and recording artist who is active in Westchester County, just outside New York City. He has worked with students in Irvington, Dobbs Ferry, Hastings, Tarrytown, Scarsdale, Ardsley, Sleepy Hollow and Briarcliff Manor.
In the past year his CD's have appeared numerous times on the prestigious WQXR radio program "Reflections From the Keyboard." He has given a presentation on the music of Artur Schnabel at the International Keyboard Institute and Festival at Mannes College, written the Preface for the new edition of the Dance Suite of Schnabel, and been interviewed on the blog, New York Pianist.
He is currently recording a major piano work, 37 Canons, Inventions and Fugues by the American composer, Louis Pelosi, for release on a new CD in 2010.
Also, he is the founder of KASP Records, which has produced five CD's. They include his performances of music by Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann and Brahms, plus little known but important works of Ludwig Spohr (1784-1859) and Artur Schnabel (1882-1951). Among these are the first recordings of Spohr's Piano Sonata and Schnabel's Dance Suite, as well as a performance of Schnabel's Seven Pieces of 1947. You can read about these recordings at www.kasprecords.com.
Some of Isler's performances have been captured on video, and may be viewed on YouTube:
- Donald Isler plays Godowski: Alt Wien (Old Vienna). 1:40
- Donald Isler plays Rachmaninoff: Sonata No. 2 In B-Flat Minor. 7:15
- Donald Isler plays Saint-Saens: Etude (In The Form of a Waltz). 7:09
He has served on the juries of various competitions, such as at the Pre-College Concerto Competition at the prestigious Juilliard School, and on the Bruce Hungerford Memorial Award panel at the Young Concert Artists auditions.
He writes concert reviews.
And he's had years and years of education, both before and after receiving the Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the Manhattan School of Music, majoring in piano. For example, he attended pedagogy courses at the Diller-Quaile School in New York, as well as the summer seminar in piano technique at the Taubman Institute in Massachusetts.
His teachers were three wonderful ensemble artists, Sina Berlinski, Artur Balsam and Eleanor Hancock, and five pianists with major solo and recording careers: Bruce Hungerford, Constance Keene, Robert Goldsand, Lilian Kallir, and Zenon Fishbein.
What does one do with all these different influences? One takes the best one learned from each one!