University of South Florida (USF) College of The Arts (CoTA)

Happy Birthday Bob Helps!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Please join us in celebrating the life and music of eminent American pianist/composer Robert Helps! His musical friends and colleagues from the USF School of Music will perform published and unpublished selections from Helps' solo piano music and piano/string chamber music. Featured are USF faculty: Svetozar Ivanov, piano; Scott Kluksdahl, cello; Carolyn Stuart, violin; Dharshini Tambiah, piano.

Sunday October 23rd, 4pm
USF Concert Hall

Contact The Arts at USF box office at or call 813-974-2323
Advance purchase tickets $8 for students and seniors, $12 for general admission
Day of Show tickets, cash only, are $10 for students and seniors, $15 for general admission.

Celebratory Chamber concert given on what would have been Helps' 83rd birthday. All-Helps program featuring piano solo and piano-string chamber works, including both of the piano trios, the Postcards, selections from Hommages and the Transcriptions, the duo for 'cello and piano and 'Fantasy' for violin and piano.

In addition to the Resident Artist concert:

Helps the Teacher
Oct. 23, 3pm
USF School of Music Conference Room
Robert Helps taught with kindness, humor and humility; his many students have vivid and fond memories of their time with him and often cite how he influenced them personally as well as musically. This event is a rare opportunity to watch Helps in action as a teacher; these Masterclass videos come from the Robert Helps Collection held in Special Collections at the University of South Florida Library.

Helps the Pianist
Oct. 23, 6pm
USF School of Music Barness Recital Hall
Recital given by Robert Helps, piano. Varied program of Helps' legendary playing taken from recordings held in Special Collections at the University of South Florida Library.

Eminent composer, legendary performer and much-loved teacher, Robert Helps was one of those rare musicians who excelled in all three fields.Through his compositional output he embraced the many musical languages of the twentieth century, gaining admirers as much for his angst-ridden expressionism as for his touching romanticism. As a performer, his late-night impromptu recitations became the stuff of legend and, as a dedicated and magnanimous teacher; his students included the likes of David del Tredici and Alan Feinberg.

“Robert Helps is not only the pianist’s pianist and the composer’s composer, but he is the composer’s pianist and the pianist’s composer…He long has been a legend in his own time, and he deserves it.”-Milton Babbitt in 1996

“Robert Helps…is legendary…His effortless-seeming mastery of all aspects of music, laced with uproarious humor and unquenchable zest for life makes him the man that is so loved and admired by all.”- David del Tredici

Composer, pianist, teacher, friend – Bob Helps has excelled in all these roles so well and for so long that by now, we can no longer imagine the world of music without his generous nature and adventurous spirit.” -Garrick Ohlsson

“When I met Bob, it was like a force of nature had walked into my life. He was a huge presence-both personally and musically-and I will never forget him. I still miss him. This 10th Anniversary concert to his memory is a testament to the power of his life and music.”- Joan Tower

In addition to the concert and seminars at USF, Well Found Music Productions presents this fantastic program in New York at the Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall.

Well Found Music Productions Presents ‘A Celebration of the Life and Music of Robert Helps
Thursday November 3rd, 8pm
Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York, 154 West 57th Street, New York.
Tickets go on sale Saturday 17th September at 11am: $48, $42, $28 from Carnegie Hall Box Office 212-247-7800, or visit
The Life and Music of Robert Helps will be celebrated further through VIP and special guest events
held in the days surrounding the concert. For the most up-to-date information please visit


Svetozar Ivanov, piano: Svetozar Ivanov’s appearances as recitalist and orchestral soloist include performances at Salle Gaveau in Paris, The Bethaniënklooster in Amsterdam, “Salon des Arts” in Bulgaria, Zurich Conservatory, Festival “Peter the Great” in the Netherlands, Chautauqua Music Festival and Sequoia Concerts in San Francisco. Ivanov’s two recent solo CDs, ‘Naked Tango’ and ‘Vers la Flamme’ were praised by All Music Guide for being “superbly original, quite moving, personal and musically absorbing” and “filled with sensual longing, anguished yearning, anxious dread and provocative energy”. Ivanov is the head of the Piano Department at the University of South Florida

Scott Kluksdahl, cello: Scott Kluksdahl is Professor of Violoncello at the University of South Florida, and has appeared as orchestral soloist with numerous ensembles including The San Francisco Symphony, the Asheville, Omaha, Richmond (Indiana), and Tampa Bay orchestras, Bulgaria's Sofia Philharmonic, and Colombia's Orquesta Filarmonica de Bogota. Scott is a highly regarded interpreter of 20th and 21st Century music, and has commissioned, premiered, and recorded works from contemporary composers including Elliott Carter, Robert Helps, Bernard Rands, Augusta Read Thomas, David del Tredici, and Richard Wernick.

Carolyn Stuart, violin: Carolyn Stuart is heard regularly in prominent American & European centers, including recent appearances at Merkin Concert Hall in New York, Association Philomuses in Paris, Salon des Artes in Sofia, and concerts in Washington DC, Toronto, Athens, Vicenza, & Zurich. She is a member of the acclaimed new music group Quorum and has recorded for Gega New, Albany, Capstone, and Blue Griffin labels. An eloquent interpreter of modern music, Ms. Stuart avidly collaborates with current composers and has performed for the Robert Helps International Festival, the American New Arts Music Festival, and the International Alliance of Women in Music. Carolyn Stuart is Associate Professor of Violin at the University of South Florida.

Dharshini Tambiah, piano: This is pianist Dharshini Tambiah’s third appearance at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall; her previous solo recitals at Weill included music by Robert Helps as well as the World Premiere of ‘Ballade’, a solo work which she commissioned from acclaimed American composer, Augusta Read Thomas. Tambiah has also performed in major concert venues across Europe & the US, including St. Martin-in-the-Fields in London; the Philomuse Association in Paris; the Esterhazy Palace in Austria as part of the International Haydn Festival; and the Kaufman Center in New York. Dharshini Tambiah is Professor of Piano at the University of South Florida.


News & Events


> Architecture & Community Design
> Art & Art History
> Music
> Theatre & Dance

Institute for Research in Art
> Contemporary Art Museum
> Graphicstudio

Give to the College Join Our Mailing List
  Home   |   Accreditations   |   Give to the College  |   Join Our Mailing List   |   Disclaimer   |   Contact Us