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John Kenneth Adams Collection

Identifier: SCU-MUS-0012

The French music collection includes first editions by Massenet, Chabrier, Ravel, Falla, D'Indy, and Debussy and a series of 1930 copperplate engravings by Bernard Naudin depicting Beethoven and his Immortal Beloved. These engravings illustrate Ludwig von Beethoven in the context of his turbulent relationship with the Immortal Beloved (assumed to be Countess Therese von Brunsvik) and of the countess's proported connection to the Appassionata sonata.

The Adams collection also includes over a dozen photo albums, scrapbooks, and recordings, representing a 40-year performing and teaching career. These materials represent a significant history of the USC School of Music piano program, as well.


  • 1920-2008


5 Linear Feet

Biographical / Historical

A noted performer of French piano music, John Kenneth Adams has performed the complete piano music of Claude Debussy in cycle, as well as important works by Fauré, d'Indy, Ravel, Chausson, Poulenc and Satie. His debut in London brought him instant recognition as a important artist in the French tradition. Concerts have taken him to 22 foreign countries, including major tours of South America, Italy, and Spain for the United States Information Service. In the USA he has performed recitals at the National Gallery of Art, the Phillips Collection, and an all French program at Weill Recital Hall, in addition to many concerts for the Matthay Festival and the Mannheimer Piano Festival. Since 1986 he has made nine visits to South Korea, where he has performed in all the principal cities and given many master classes and lessons. Since the summer of 2004 he has been a master teacher at the Varna International Master Class in Varna, Bulgaria.

John Kenneth Adams is a graduate of Yale School of Music and the Royal Academy of Music, London. His principal teachers include Bruce Simonds, Frank Mannheimer, Hilda Dederich and llonka Deckers. He is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Piano at the University of South Carolina School of Music in Columbia. A recognized exponent of the teachings of Tobias Matthay, he is in constant demand as a master teacher, judge and lecturer.

Physical Location

This collection is housed in the Music Library, which is located in the School of Music at 813 Assembly Street in Room 208 (on the 2nd floor).

Digital Collection

Repository Details

Part of the Music Library Repository

813 Assembly Street, Room 208
School of Music, University of South Carolina
Columbia SC 29208 USA
803-777-1426 (Fax)

John Kenneth Adams Collection
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