The Schnabel Music Foundation was created to illuminate the musical contributions of the entire Schnabel Family – a legacy of creativity that began with Artur and Therese, continued through Karl Ulrich and Helen, and found its ultimate expression in their great-grandson, Claude Mottier.

Artur Schnabel (1882–1951) A legend among pianists of the twentieth century, Artur Schnabel is best known for his interpretations and editions of Beethoven’s piano works, for championing the performance of Mozart’s piano sonatas, and the then unknown piano works of Schubert. His compositions were, in Ernst Krenek’s words, “of remarkable and unusual significance.”

Therese Behr Schnabel (1876-1959) One of the most admired Lieder singers of her time. Many of the foremost pianists competed to accompany her in concert, among them Richard Strauss. Her singing often moved her listeners to tears. Therese Behr’s impeccable musicianship greatly influenced the playing of Artur and Karl Ulrich Schnabel.

Piano Duo Schnabel The cornerstone of the Piano Duo Schnabel was Karl Ulrich. At first he performed and recorded four-hand music with his father, later with his wife Helen, and after her passing, with Canadian pianist Joan Rowland. Specializing in rarely performed pieces, the Duo performed to international acclaim and issued numerous recordings.


Karl Ulrich Schnabel (1909-2001) A pianist of international renown, he had a distinguished career spanning eight decades as a solo performer and also interpreter of original works for one piano four-hands and for two pianos. He was one of the most sought after teachers in the world, and was especially known for his ability to teach musical expression.

Helen Schnabel (1911-1974) A child prodigy who by age nine had made her first appearance at Carnegie Hall. Helen Schnabel had a long internationally acclaimed career as a performer and teacher. She appeared as a soloist, and, with her husband, Karl Ulrich Schnabel, in recitals of original works for one piano four-hands and two pianos.

Claude Alain Mottier (1972-2002) Though Claude, a gifted pianist who received a Bachelors degree in piano performance, excelled in such diverse fields as biological science and linguistics during his short life, his overriding passion remained music. He brought intelligence, intensity and grace to everything he was involved in. Claude was killed August 14th 2002 in a tragic car accident.

Listen to March 26, 2017  KALW radio show with Sarah Cahill hosting the Schnabel Music Foundation

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