I first heard Van Cliburn play in the 2 story wood frame Music School at Centenary College where I as a young teen ager was studying piano at the time in the early-mid 1950's. I have thrilled to and been inspired by him and his incredible musical gifts ever since. I still play the piano. I was so delighted to see him at the midnight Christmas service at Holy Cross Episcopal Church on several occasions. Sally Fox
I saw Van Cliburn in Chicago, a few months after he won the Tchaikovsky prize. Over 100,000 people were there (such a crowd has never been there since). He was remarkable. And he treated us to five encores!
I can't stop listening to Chaikovsky Concert No 1 brilliantly performed by Van Cliburn... RIP, Maestro
Mr. Cliburn was my inspiration to learn classical piano. I remember spending hours practicing to his 33 RPM album. Just an inspirational person.
My deepest sympathy to All his loved ones. Rest in peace.
I will always remember being present when he was inducted into the Classical Music Hall of Fame. I experienced his famous charm...and saw him meet Rachmaninoff's grandson!
He is in my heart and memory. I am grateful for his influence.
i know him as long as i live and will always remember, love and miss him... he was like a sun ray
i know about him as long as i live and i will always remember and love him! He was like a sun ray for us
My husband and I met Van years ago and sat with him at dinner on ocassions. We loved him and his mother Rilda Bee. Van will always be in our hearts. We will never forget the precious moments that we shared with Van.
REST IN PEACE, MY FRIEND. MAY GOD BE WITH. YOUR. FAMILY?
Although I never met Van Cliburn I did have the priviledge of hearing him perform twice and will always treasure that. He was an amazing musician and will be missed.
My thoughts and prayers are with his family and may their memories bring them comfort.
Having been born in 1952 I can say that the name Van Cliburn has always been known to me. I began my piano studies at the age of 9 and Van Cliburn has always been an inspiration to me. During my piano studies in college my professor had a huge poster of Van Cliburn at the piano and his technique was always the example of correct technique. He will be greatly missed and will always hold a special place in my memory bank as well as to others that love classical music. May he rest in peace in the hands of God.
dear cliburn family we were sorry to read of the passing of mr cliburn. we are never prepared for the passing of our loved ones. this is because we were not created to die. soon God will return the earth back to a paradise and mr cliburn will be able to live on earth eternally.
We have wonderful memories of the beginning of the Cliburn in Fort Worth and look where it is today! We will miss his enthusiasm and wonderful smile.
Who would ever have thought that our grandparents, (Ella Gertrude Strickland Cliburn and John Marshall Cliburn) would have 34 grandchildren! You were a real winner, my dear Van, and I am so glad you were a member of our family. I will always miss you, Aunt Rilda Bee and Uncle LaVan. Loved you and was so proud of your accomplishments.
Betty Cliburn Majure
Grateful for the Maestro's role as a cultural bridge, for demonstrating that what we hold in common is greater than any of our differences.
I loved Van since childhood and met him once in Dayton Ohio. He was so charming and gracious. He held my hand in both of his massive hands. I will never forget his voice. I will treasure his recordings even more now.
I believe the year was 1974 when my mother and I drove from the Denver area south to Pueblo, Colorado. We had heard that Van Cliburn was playing. When we arrived at the auditorium we were told the concert had been sold out, BUT seating was available on stage behind Mr. Cliburn. I don't know when I've ever received such wonderful news! The concert was the glorious tunes that Van Cliburn could tease from the keyboard. Even in a dusty, small auditorium the music was angelic. Even though this young adult (me)was able to sit on stage with Mr. Cliburn, yet another surprise awaited. My mother and I met Van Cliburn's mother. Yes, she was backstage that night looking elegant in a turquoise brocaid with a corsage of fresh cut sweet peas. Again, reflecting on the dusty "smallville" meeting Van Cliburn and his mother was akin to a visit to Mt. Olympus. It was an honor I will never forget and still cherish.
In 1973 I was living in Shreveport and often ate at Don's Seafood. Van Cliburn and his mother often ate there and I was fortunate enough to become a speaking aquaintance with them. When his father died in 1974 I attended the visitation with a friend, Van was so kind and appreciative, he took time to sit with me and share his feelings. Beside having a great talent he was a wonderful compassionate person He will be missed by many.
I was night auditor @ The Hilton Inn in the late 70's. One night Van Cliburn and a companion walked in, carrying various paper bags, and bickering about who would carry what.
I advised that there would be "no feudin' fussin' or fightin'" in the lobby. Van immediately responded with
I'll bet you don't allow no shootin' of guns either. I replied that's right!
He was so quick-witted, and genuine!
Rest in Peace.
As a child I heard Mr. Cliburn play with the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra when he was a teenager. As a music student at TCU in 1966, I was privilaged to see and hear him again. He is indeed a National and International treasure, and his funeral was a triumphant tribute to such as world figures honored him. God will be happy to have him accompany the Heavenly choir.
If Dr. Francine Reese Morrison, dear friend of your mother could write this, she would undoubtedly say you have gone to be with your Mother and The Lord. You, with your music opened doors to the hearts of the world.our lives were enriched because you were here.
Rev. Dr. Ben A. Morrison,
son of Dr. Francine and Jury Morrison
I have known van since 1955 through my wife Elaine who attended Hilliard with van I always remover how he loved ballet and we used to go to the Hollywood bowl to see Margot Fonteyn he loves driving along sunset blvd and see the vibrant nightlife may he rest in piece
Our family was privileged to hear Mr. Cliburn who was "filling in" for Andre Watts in a concert at Bass Hall. What a magical evening! My heart is heavy but also rejoicing because of his faith.
Janice McCraw, Gettysburg, PA
May God wipe the tears from your eyes Rev
We will always love you so much!
Thank you for everithing you had done!
As one raised in Kilgore and whose mother had the honor and privilege to have Van in her Biology class at KHS, I hurt deeply to learn of his passing. While at Juilliard, Van came down to the pier in New YOrk City as my mom, Mildred Russell, was about to board the Queen Mary. The photo still exists, Mom, 5 foot one inch, beside Van, 6 foot four. I was fortunate to attend an after-breakfast impromptu concert, for five of us, on my mother's little Story and Clark upright. Mom worked with Rildia on civic music business, and on such occasions as her breakfast, she always asked Rildia if she could "borrow" Van when he was home from Juilliard. Many from Kilgore hurt with me, I'm sure.
Kilgore HS, Class of '45.
Who other than Van Cliburn could have brought together in the same setting tributes, spoken or read or floral, from Imelda Marcos, the Richard M. Nixon Foundation, Vladimir Putin, George W. Bush, President Obama and TX Gov
Perry? The services for our musicial virtiuosa were eclectic with old Baptist hymns
YOU WILL ALWAYS BE REMEMBERED IN OUR HEARTS.. THERE WILL NEVER BE ANOTHER VAN CLIBURN. GOD BLESS YOU AND REST IN PEACE.
YOUR MUSIC WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN.
We who knew Van here in Kilgore will be
able to say, "I knew him when..." Your musical talent was second to none. Godspeed to my South Martin Street neighbor. Nancy Cato Bullock
I remember meeting Van Cliburns parents in New York City which is where I'm from. They gave a Stienway piano to my church which is Calvary Baptist Church in New York City. They were telling us about it. It was such a neat experience. This was in the early 60's. I grew up with a great appreciation for the piano. My mother was a great pianist from Europe. I would give anything if my mother could have heard Mr. Cliburn play. His talent was truly a gift from God.
Mr. Van Cliburn now you are in Heaven you will be playing your music to God. You will be greatly miss.
Like many other Fort Worthians, I have lost someone who has been an inspiration to me for my entire life. Thank you for sharing your giftedness with others and for living your faith so authentically.
A lasting memory for me will always be when Mr. Cliburn came up to me at an event at which my organization was honoring a Fort Worth person for her conservation efforts a few years ago. He congratulated me on my speech, vigorously shaking my hand as he did so. This was characteristically generous behavior by him to people, and he seemed genuinely pleased when I said that I was merely trying to emulate him. Great people are always modest. I hope he will be able to play a celestial piano for eternity.
My family loves piano. When my daughter and son were only 10, they have watched Van Cliburn Piano competitions and concerts. Since then every four years, watching the competition has become a tradition for my family. We felt that we were part of Van Cliburn music world. He brought beauty of live to my family and to the entire world. Mr. Cliburn will be deeply missed.
rest in peace... god bless...
What a truly gracious talent we have been blessed by during Mr. Cliburn's life. Godspeed.......
May God Bless one of the most talented Texans and Americans ever....Van Cliburn!
Heaven just received an upgrade and the music will live on
At the age of 6, I took piano lessons from Mrs. Cliburn in their home. "HE" was about 14 at that time and would often take time to let me sit by him as he played for me. Even then he had was very kind and was a "presence" to share space with!
What a wonderful and talented man
Mr. Cliburn was. I can only imagine
the music he will enjoy in Heaven.
May he rest in peace.
I will always remember the first impression you made upon me when we met during the opening ceremonies for the Bass Performance Hall. Your generosity and commitment to the arts will never be forgotten. Thank you Mr. Cliburn for your contributions to the educational plight of underprivileged children, including African Americans. Rest in Peace. Attorney Bobbie Edmonds
So many lives were touched...and many musical careers launched because of Mr. Cliburn. May he rest in peace.
To the Cliburn family, Your dear Cliburn inspired us all as we enjoyed his playing and the international competition. Love and prayers to you
My favorite album as a child was your 1958 recording of Tchaikovsky's Concerto No.1. I've been playing classical piano ever since.
Your music will never be forgotten.
Godspeed Mr. Cliburn. Thank you for your everlasting gift of music to us all. You were a true gentleman.
We have lost possibly the greatest pianist of our time.He will be sorely missed by all.
Thank you for all you have done.
I'm just a no-body...just a long time fan. I went to his concert in Minneapolis at Orchestra Hall in the 70's. After the concert, in the green room I got his autograph. I have cherished it all these years. I always wanted to write to him to let him know that MY LIFE was so much BETTER because of him and his beautiful music. God has him now. We will miss him.
Mr. Cliburn was a Texas and American hero. May he rest in peace.
Dear Mr Cliburn, your hands are not silent you are playing where it counts, for the Lord Jesus Christ.We shall not see the graceious, human being you were again God Bless
Thank you for a lifetime of Beautiful music. Be at peace in your rest.
We were honored to first see you in concert many years ago. Your talent has been an inspiration to all. Rest in peace Mr Cliburn.
“Pray for the person on your right,” the pastor said as people worshipping in the sanctuary of Broadway Baptist Church bowed their heads.
Imagine my surprise as I glanced to my right and realized I would be praying for Van Cliburn. Van Cliburn? What should I pray? What does Van Cliburn need? How can a regular person pray for a famous person?
Then, I realized that above all the accolades and fame, Van Cliburn was a blessed and precious child of God, as we all are.
Praying for Van Cliburn that Sunday at Broadway taught me a valuable lesson. All of God's children are connected and considered special in His sight.
“Blest be the tie that binds
our hearts in Christian love;
The fellowship of kindred minds
Is like to that above.”
I'll bet Van Cliburn knew that old hymn and could sing and play it. Now, after his death, I understand more clearly that he lived it.
May the love of friends and family carry you through your grief.
I listened over and over to a Van Cliburn album I bought as a teenager in addition to the Beatles and other pop music we enjoyed. My wife surprised me with tickets to the Cliburn competition on my birthday in 2009. We had box seats, most of which were empty that night. About halfway through, we noticed that Mr. Cliburn and some friends were seated just two boxes away. He appeared to be lost in the music, enjoying the young artists in a way that only he could, having come up through competitions himself. What an amazing talent, and what a great ambassador for our city and country!
Mr. Cliburn Autographed my tattered copy of Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata," sheet music in 1970, when I was studying the piano as a youth. I brought my mother to what would be his last recital in Symphony Hall, Boston, in 2001, his first recital in Boston in 30 years. He commented from the stage on how much he enjoyed playing in Symphony Hall. For an encore he played one of his own compositions. His hand are now silent.
I was a fourteen piano student living near St. Louis, Mo. when
Van captured the music world. My mother took me to St. Louis to hear him. I have scrapbooks full of articles, a letter from his mother. I have taught piano for 45 years now. Loved him dearly.
Rest In Peace, Mr. Cliburn. My Best To Your Family. See You On The Other Side Some Day!
Van you will truly be missed by so many. What a contribution you have made to America.
God Bless you.
We have lost a very, vry special person. Rest in peace, dear Mr. Cliburn. We all love you.
Thank you for giving so much to your beloved church family and to the City of Fort Worth
The world has lost a talented pianist and giant of a man, not only in stature but in how we should live our lives and treat our neighbors.
You will be truly missed. I am so glad I got to meet you and shake your hand and see your beautiful smile face to face.
My aunt, Mrs. Frank Thyng, of Kilgore was Van's strong advocate,friend,and
benefactor.Through her, I was privileged to know the Cliburn family and to call Van a childhood friend. He will be missed in so many ways by so many people around the world.
Texas and the world has lost a great treasure. You were the inspiration to so many. You are misssed
It was an honor to know Van and be his friend. He has left us a wonderful legacy of beautiful music. It will continue to inspire us. Thank you, Van, for sharing your wonderful gift with us. We will miss you and always love you and remember you. May the angels lead you into Paradise.
A wonderful ambassador for the United States, with music his talisman. Rest In Peace!
You played from your soul. You were my inspiration to attend Juilliard. The world is a bit smaller without you.
Sleep well, my sweet prince. Thank you for the joy you have brought to my life. I hope someday to hear you play again in heaven.
When the Botanical Research Institute of Texas honored Lady Bird Johnson with its Award of Excellence in Conservation in 1996, the inimitable Van Cliburn opened the ceremonies by playing the Star Spangled Banner and then unexpectedly and spontaneously said he would like to play something
especially for Mrs. Johnson.
With characteristic aplomb, he joyously played and sang "I'M GLAD THERE IS YOU".
Such an incredibly memorable event between two world-class people could
only have happened in Fort Worth.
Van Cliburn was indeed a legend without peer and will be sorely missed.
Van = wonderful ambassador for FW, USA and classical music. RIP.
Van, We will never forget you and your beautiful music. I am so glad you came into our lives and left us with so many wonderful memories.
Van would enjoy eating dinner at the beach in San Diego with my husband and I. He was so kind to people. He often called my mother on her Birthday. I will miss him greatly.
Another great loss to the world. May the God of Comfort give this family peace and endurance to continue during this most diffcult time.(2Co.1:2-4) BarbMeill(NO)
Van Cliburn truly a magnificent and gracious person. He electrified any room he entered, a man of great wit and great wealth of knowledge, when he started to speak everyone would certainly stop to listen, hoping and praying to be a part of his conversation no matter the topic. As he started to play, the way his fingers glided over the keys his music could be felt throughout the entire room sending chills down your spine and goosebumps that would last the entire evening, hoping that it would never end. A fascinating man,with a gift he shared with the entire world, will be greatly, missed, and loved by all. Mr. Van Cliburn may you Rest In Peace, as heaven awaits the Texas Angel who conquered the world.
As a child, Van Cliburn was the first classical pianist I ever saw in concert. I heard him in my hometown of Jacksonville, Florida, everywhere else I could attend, and never missed a television appearance. His playing inspired me in my own piano studies and instilled in me a lifelong love of classical music. My family and I now live in rural Mississippi coincidentally less than a mile from a small country cemetery where his grandfather, Marshall Cliburn, is buried. A century ago, Mr. Cliburn, a local resident, donated a number of acres of land to construct a church camp which is still in operation today. When my son designed a garden spot around the camp sign for his Eagle Scout project, we sent Van Cliburn a photo of the area and an letter of explanation. Van himself wrote a very beautiful congratulatory letter to my son, mentioning his grandfather, and how touched he was about the connection. That letter and the recordings and memories of Van Cliburn's performances will forever be treasures to our family. A true gentleman, a one-of-a-kind musician, and a wonderful person with a heart of gold. Bravo, dear Van! We will love you forever.
Grief can be so hard, but our special memories help us cope. Remembering you and your loved one today and always.
We have known and loved Van since he was 7 years old in Kilgore. We are very sad to lose him, but have wonderful memories of his kindness and generosity. However great he became, he never forgot his old schoolmates
May your fond memories bring a smile to your face. Turn to God to bring you comfort in your distress. He is near to all those calling upon him and their cry's for help he hears.
Psalms 145: 18,19
Classical music has sustained a great loss but there will be wonderful music in Heaven. My prayers are with the Van Cliburn family. Nancy Dantes, Shreveport, LA
I met Van at TCU in 1977 during a lunch break during a competition. Several of us piano students were sitting in the balcony watching the competition and unbeknownst to us, so was Van. When it came time to break for lunch, several of us were discussing who we heard and giving opinions who we thought were the best/worst. Van approached us and wanted to know where we were going for lunch. We told him we were going to the cafeteria that was in the basement. We mentioned to him that there was a nicer one on the upper level. He insisted on eating with us at the lower level one and wanted to listen to and add to our continuing discussions. What an amazing day! He was the most kindest and humble human being I've ever met. Everytime I saw him after that, I still saw this kind person who always talked to EVERYONE, no matter how busy he was.
God bless you Van.
What a wonderful gift he shard with the whole world.
Another treasue lost to us...It is with much concern and sadness that our young people will never experience this true genius of the concert piano.
I'll always remenber Van Cliburn's performance in Russia.
Though they were reluctant, the Russian panel was compelled to recognize The Maestro!
To the Cliburn family: There is a blessing beyond all the grief and tears if only we hold God's hand He'll help us to bear our sadness. JOHN 14:18
RIP Van.....may you have everlasting peace.
You are my Absolute Ideal as a pianist and a human. Word fails me,I could never explain what your music and your personality means to me.You are always in my heart, mr.Cliburn. You are Genius.
Thank you for being the permanent Inspiraton in performing and in my whole life.
GONE TO SOON...
Having been a child fan of Liberace I was prepared to love and listen to Van Cliburn. What a wonderful gift we received. RIP
Fort Worth has lost a true treasure. Thank you Mr. Van Cliburn for all that you haven given to us, your entire life.
I saw Van Cliburn at his concert in Columbus, Ohio in mid 70s. Surely, he was a great pianist but I felt more than that, so genuinely humble, friendly, kind a person.
It was a dream come true to hear Mr. Cliburn in solo Piano Concert in San Antonio, in the early 70's. I will never forget the beautiful music, but also his enormous hands, I thought at the time he could clutch a football half way around on end. What a blessing to hear and see him that unforgiteable night...God bless him forever....
Rev. Ellis Villarreal
I will never forget the commanding presence that Van was onstage -- and his powerful display of music and soul -- it has left a lifelong impression upon me -- I met him backstage on more than one occasion, and was equally awestruck by his deep baritone-bass voice, rising and falling with deep expression, as he talked -- like opera / theater up close -- our loss is heaven's gain! We miss you terribly, already, Van -- !!! An adoring fan and pianist --
What a great talent and a great
Man. You will be greatly missed
A close friend for over 60 years, Van is someone I cannot forget. He had a profound influence on my life, and his music blessed the world . His tremendous gifts to the kingdom of God can only be evaluated when we all come before the Father. He was unselfish, genuine, and a man of faith. Nancy Thurmond, Fort Worth
May the great memories of Mr. Cliburn life live on. He will be truly missed by many. So sorry for your loss. John 5:29
We never made any of Van's concerts here in Waco, but he was one of the greatest pianists in the world. Condolences,Prayers to Ms.Mary Ann Falcone for her loss. RIP Van.
Words cannot adequately express the incredible gifts of a truly blessed musician, but the music does and will for eternity. A great American, a true Texan and the most kind, generous and humble man I have ever met. A life well lived. You will be missed. Bravo!
A remarkable pianist. I recall a concert in Garland, TX, when Van Cliburn and the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra performed. The Spring Creek Festival appearance of these two world class musicians lingers after 30 years.
May Van Cliburn rise on "Eagles's Wings" and play "I Am The Bread of Life.'
My piano lessons are some of my fondest memories that I will cherish now, more than ever. Thank you for the graciousness, generosity, and encouragement. I will always remember you.
Celebrating a life well lived. We will cherish the memories forever.
BEAUTIFUL MUSIC.WITH THE HEAVENLY FATHER.AND PLAYING,WITH THE ANGELS.THE MUSIC WILL LIVE FOREVER. LIVE ON!! WELL DONE!!!
I had the privilege of living accross the street from Van Cliburn and Ms. Rilda Bee in Shreveport, La. Our family had just returned from extensive overseas travel when my father retired from the Air Force.
Our second point of entry was my mother's home in Shreveport.
I played on the stage at the Shreveport Symphony to the tune of "Climbing".
Rilda Bee and Van suggested I take intense piano lessons from from Mrs. McBride. She was strict, but the best instructor I had ever had.
I have to add Van and Ms. Rildia always bought my Girl Scott Cookies(choclate mint).
I was so blessed to be invited to Van's concerts at the Shreveport Symphony.
This I will always treasure.
Van, after my father, was one of the most gracious influence in my musical life.
With many thanks,
Barbara Ann Klucarich
Thinking of the Cliburn family
Houston and Corpus Christi,TX
When I met Van,I was an all-night DJ in Fort Worth. He immediately left the impression of being a humble, friendly individual. I jokingly asked him if he enjoyed "country" music. He laughed and said, "I like all kinds of music when it's done well. I even listen to you when I have nothing to do after midnight!" Then, he added, "And I enjoy your program."
What a compliment he was to our city, and our nation.
Mr. VAN CLIBURN,
A man for all time !
Your memory and accomplishments will be
FOREVER REVERED !
My sincere condolences to the family of this wonderful musician. May you be comforted by the God of all comfort at this time of sorrow.
What a Texas treasure that was shared with the world!
Rest in peace, Mr. Cliburn. Your unwavering kindness, grace and humanity have enriched countless lives throughout the world. The sonority of your pianism is immortal and I am reminded of the words of the Japanese poet Basho:
"The temple bell stops - but the sound keeps coming out of the flowers."
My condolences to the family. May you take come in Psalms 65:2
I have met Mr. Van Cliburn several times in the sixtieth at the Ernest Allen Ranch in Fort Worth. Ernest Allen was a great sponsor of the Van Cliburn Contest and we all admired him. He brought culture to Fort Worth. A great man.
"It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness" and Van Cliburn did that for the world in Russia.
His talent brought peace to our own lives. May he rest in our Lord's peace.
I met Van Cliburn at a Piggly Wiggly supermarket in Schreveport on Christmas Eve in about 1973. He was shopping; selecting fruits and vegetables, putting them in a plastic bag which he placed in his shopping cart. I remember when I spoke with him..."Are you Van Cliburn?", he was gracious,modest,kind,and spoke with a sense of humor. Thank you Mr. Cliburn for this wonderful memory. Rest In Peace.
May the angels guide thee home.
(tears prevent typing more)
It was such an honor to work with you in the 1980s, during the 7th Competition that bears your name. You were not only a legendary talent, but you were also a true gentleman, and a most gracious man. It was a privilege to have known you. May you rest in peace, and know that you will never be forgotten.
Be careful of the piece you choose to play, as you will play it for the rest of your life. I am not sure whether or not his mother told him this in the book on Van Cliburn's life.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for inspiring my career as a music teacher. We will miss you, but I know you are at peace and with God. Play on!
I met Van Cliburn by chance at breakfast in the Hyatt hotel in Nashville in the early 80s. I greeted him and he invited me to join him for breakfast. We had a most engaging time talking about music, music schools and performances. As an Eastman School of Music grad I was able to share with him mutual acquaintances and friends. Mostly, I listened to him share about his years as a young concert artist. But he also seemed genuinely interested in my music career as well. He was a most gracious and kind person. I was honored to spend time with him.
A great musician, a great man, a great Texan.
Such an amazing talent and a warm and gracious human being. I met Mr. Cliburn at La Piazza in Fort Worth several years ago while he enjoyed time/dinner with friends at his favorite spot in the bar. He always enjoyed hearing of my trip adventures and always asked to hear about the latest any time I saw him. I have missed those visits since moving to Palm Springs several years ago. He contributed so much to so many and will be sorely missed. Rest in Peace Van Cliburn...
My first concert was in New York when he came to play at a local college,under a tent. It was remarkable, i was young but immediately entranced and when my father took me back to meet him and he shook my hand, with the biggest hands i had ever seen, i was mesmerized and knew i would be a fan forever. Years later, i was fortunate enough to see him play in Texas. those memories have stayed with me all these years.
A truly great American. He will be sorely missed.
Charron & Peter Denker, Dallas
with the angels accompying you with their harps I know the music will be beautiful. Play on,Van.
I first time to meet Van was when he moved back to Fort Worth. I worked for him. He was such an amasing man. He was such an amasing person. He was very genorise and so kind. My life was blessed to have known him.There are not enough words to describe him. R.I.P Van may your music and kidness live on.
When my husband and I moved to Texas in 1984, I knew no one, but I wrote to Mr. Cliburn, asking him if I could volunteer at the piano competition. A few weeks later, I received a letter from the director of the foundation telling me that Van had forwarded my letter and that, yes, I could work for the competition. What a gracious and warm man he was, always in navy blue and always with a kind greeting for everyone.
Van spread Light with his talent and Texas-sized generosity and wit. He is sorely missed. Van also taught other musicians to spread their Light.
Thank you from the bottom of this East Texas girl's heart, Van. You and your Mother meant so much to my family. No, we didn't know you personally. Inspiration travels far--and yours surely did. Love, Pamela
I was fortunate to have seen Van Cliburn perform at the New Years Eve performance in the convention center in Fort Worth. He played Tchaikovsky's Concerto #1 and Rachmaninoff's Concerto #2. I have heard winners of the Cliburn competition play Tcahikovsky, but NO ONE could play it like Van. He was the greatest concert pianist of our time. I thank you Van for the wonderful music you gave me and the world. Shalom! Rest in Peace.
Joan Levitan Fort Worth, Texas
Listening to you play the Emperor on WRR. One always knows when it is your unmistakeable style. So many memories,too few words. Now you are one of "those we love but see no longer." Rest in Peace.
As a young child living in Kilgore Texas my father took me to a Van Cliburn concert. I do not remember many details EXCEPT for the unbelievably beautiful and wonderful sounds coming from the stage. As soon as he started playing I was totally mesmerized, and barely took a breath until the concert was over. Thirty years later I had the opportunity to hear him play again and when the music started it was like I was that young child again, sitting with my father in the concert hall, mesmerized by the beauty of the music coming from the stage, and barely breathing until the end of the concert. I extend my everlasting thanks to Mr. Cliburn for my memories; and I extend my thoughts and prayers to the family.
My sympathy to the family and the music world. An International Pianist that gave beautiful music to the world!
When I think of Mr. Cliburn, honor, respect and integrity come to mind -he reflected all of these virtues.
Mr. Cliburn was first a wonderful human being and secondly, a very gifted pianist. Thank you for sharing these gifts with us. The world was a better place because of you. I was fortunate to attend the concert in September where he spoke to all of us from his heart. There was not a dry eye around me. My prayers and condolences to his family at this time of sorrow.
Thank you for being such an inspiration. You were truly a gift to music, the arts, the world, and especially to my beloved hometown of Fort Worth. You will be greatly missed, and forever remembered.
From 1989 - 1997 I was the event planner and personal assistant of Mrs. Elton Hyder, Jr. Van Cliburn and she were best of friends and for many years I had the pleasure of planning numerous events, hosted by Mrs. Hyder, for Mr. Cliburn and the nationally acclaimed featured artists during the Fort Worth Symphony's Cliburn Concert Series. He was always a very gentle and kind man that had a voice that was extremely calming and a demeanor that put everyone at ease. However, the one (1) event that will always be with me was the night that Mrs. Hyder, her daughter Whitney, Mr. Cliburn, a couple of close family friends and I sat into the wee hours of the morning planning Mr. Hyder's funeral. At one point I became overwhelmed with emotion for the love I had for Mr. Hyder, because of the wonderful way he treated my child and the way he had of making me laugh almost everyday. As tears rolled down my face, Mr. Cliburn placed his hands on my shoulders and said, It's going to be okay, Kathy, he's in a much better place now and no long in so much pain. That somehow made things seems not so bad and I am so glad that several years later I had the opportunity to thank him for his heartfelt gesture that made losing a dear friend a little easier.
RIP Mr. Van Cliburn...You will be missed by so many who's lives you have touched in ways that you may not even know!
Peace be with you Thomas Smith. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
To a great legendary performer...r.i.p.
We knew the Cliburns in Kilgore in 1949. First heard him play with his mother in Kilgore. Wonderful people, warm,caring. Van was the most Wonderful person and also pianist-never be another
He was my true Idol in my younger years and my memories. May he be bless with eternal life
Thank you for so many wonderful memories and the music. What a model you were for young pianists. The competition won't be quite as inspiring without you this year. My memories of you at the "Cliburn Gold" concert this year are cherished. Your bravery in the agonizing face of bone cancer was heartbreaking; so glad all that pain is behind you. Thank you for the music living with us always.
I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Cliburn at his Westover Hills estate several years ago. He was such a gracious, unassuming man even though his talent was beyond compare. After telling my parents about meeting him, they gave me their album 'Tchaikovsky Concerto No. 1', which I treasure. My Grandfather had given it to my Mom when he learned they were moving to Texas. He told her she needed to hear the "Texas Kid", Van Cliburn. He was an inspiration not only to pianists worldwide but also his fellow Fort Worth citizens. Thoughts and prayers with Tommy Smith, his friends and family.
I remember my cousin relating the story of you as a VERY young child telling the person in charge of a Tom Thumb wedding in Kilgore, that you could definitely play the wedding march for the absent pianist. And you did. I havent missed a piano competition since the 1980's. I'll be there this year remembering you with tears in my eyes.
We rejoice in the way your life blessed this world, this city and the sisters of Sigma Alpha Iota.
I never had the opportunity to meet Van, although I wish I had
His music will live on as will his name.
Spent many happy hours listening to your music. Thank you!
On Wednesday Feb. 27th, 2013, the music in heaven just got better.
A true gentleman and great pianist, who brought classical music to millions. Thank you for your gift to the world.
WE ARE SENDING OUR LOVE,PRAYERS,&CONDOLENCES TO THE CLIBURN FAMILY,FRIENDS,fANS,&ALL WHO KNEW MR. CLIBURN.
Your talent Inspired us all! God bless! Our love to your family.
Mr. Cliburn was THE International Pianist who blessed the WORLD with his music! He was a hero. May God bless the Cliburn Family during your time of sorrow.
Mr. Cliburn, you were amazing. Lucky is the Lord to have such great music in heaven.
DEAR VAN: Old friend and KHS classmate, my best wishes and prayers are with you. Your Kilgore pals and musicians knew that you were destined for greatness long before the rest of world. You were America's finest musical ambassador and one of the world's best classical pianists. Your Fort Worth legacy and many great recordings will live on forever. RIP, Van. You're one in million. Bob Moore, Wallingford, PA
Everybody probably has a Harvey Lavan Cliburn, Jr. story, or Van Ciburn, here's mine. A few short years after Van won in Russia, and came home, I was growing up in Fort Worth, Texas, and took piano lessons from a lady, named Maureen O,Dowd. Not too sure about her first name, but that was her last name. I never knew if she was married, or not. Anyway, she lived in the Crestwood Apartments, and taught me how to play the piano. I played my first recital at the Woman's Club, with Lee Moncrief, and others. I played "Antelope Antics". I did pretty well, but being young, not too interested in piano. Van Cliburn was there, and thought I, and everyone there played wonderfully. It was very sweet and gracious of him. The other time I met him was when I was listening, in the late eighties, or ninties, to the Van Cliburn competitors, at the Landreth Hall, at T. C. U. Van was talking to some friends and I was sitting at an aisle seat, and it was intermission, and I was looking over my program. Van walked over to me, with his guy friends closse by, and told me I had nice legs. I said thank you, and he and I smiled at each other. I was surprised he said that, but, it was very sweet of him. He was always a gentleman, not to mention a great pianist. Bet he is playing his magnificient music for God and Jesus, now, guess they got the best. Earth, especially the Fort Worth area, is poorer for losing Van, and Heaven, richer, but, his legacy, not to mention his mother's, with the lovely organs at Broadway Baptist Church, will live on. He will be terribly, terribly missed, but never forgotten!
We could not believe what we had just heard, that evening in 1956 at Oberlin College's Finney Chapel. I was a freshman piano major in the Conservatory at the time, and I shared the disappointment of most everyone that Leon Fleisher had taken ill and had to cancel his recital on the Artist Series. We were also baffled that his replacement was this 22-year-old Texan that few had ever heard of. What most of us knew about Texas was limited to cowboys, rodeos, the Alamo, and barbeque. But the home of a featured artist on one of the most prestigious collegiate recital series of the time? Unfathomable! To paraphrase Nathaniel in the Gospel of John, the prevailing thought among us was: Can anything good come out of Texas?
So out on stage he came, took a modest bow, and in addition to adjusting his piano bench, he would do the same with many of our attitudes and preconceptions. Yes, he was tall, as Texans had a reputation of being, he made the 9-foot Steinway look like Schroeder's toy piano, but he had a commanding presence and confidence at the keyboard that seemed to run counter to his youth and modest demeanor (he had recently won New York's Leventritt competition and was studying with Rosina Lhevinne at Juilliard, which impressed those who bothered to read his bio).
Highlighted by the recently composed Sonata by Samuel Barber, his recital was made memorable by his extraordinary tone quality, the unusually rich spaciousness of his phrasing, and his clear understanding of his performing role as messenger rather than message. Many in the audience entered the Chapel with great skepticism, and left with a feeling that American pianism was finally coming into its own and beginning to claim a special uniqueness, thanks in large measure to a remarkable exponent in the person of Van Cliburn who would soon bedazzle the musical world!
Indeed, something good and special did come out of Texas, and the Cliburn legacy will continue to enrich the musical world for generations to come!
From childhood in Kilgore, and especially
at First Baptist Church, we knew you as
friend. Always Van, our special Van.
Thank you for your loving encouragement. Your time and kind words have helped to shape my teaching. My own playing was forever changed by you and I have tried to be, in a small way, as supportive and encouraging to my students. You are forever in our hearts and minds. May you rest in peace and may God bless you.
Van Cliburn, thank you for your unequalled contributions to music and art. Thank you for shaking my hand one evening and accepting my compliments. It's a moment I shall never forget.
Fort Worth Texas
What an inspiration to all, musicians and non....a truly kind man. You will be missed.
R.I.P. Mr. Cliburn. Thank-you for the glorious music and everything you did for Ft. Worth.
Thank you, sir. You helped bring culture to Fort Worth. I am proud to live in your town. God bless your sweet soul. You were loved.
My Daughter meet Mr. Cliburn on a Field Trip to Bass Hall in the 4th Grade. He was very gracious and encouraged my daughters love of Music and the Panio.
I will never forget the first time I met you. It was at Ed Landreth Hall at TCU at one of the first Van Cliburn Competitions. I didn't have any paper for your autograph so I had you sign my right arm. It stayed there for weeks. Your eyes touched my soul right then and there and I have carried that inside me to this day. That day was over 50 years ago. We too will love you forever!!!
The sky in Washington DC was brilliant,textured, and vibrant with unusually beautiful color yesterday. Not common for a winter sky, this time of year, but texturally remininiscent of your beautiful playing, almost like you were there performing for one last command performance. Rest in peace, God's good and faithful servant
God bless you and your loved ones ~ Rest in peace.
Thank you for your gift of music to the world. I've enjoyed your music and good works since 1962 when a freshman at TCU. Nancy Wilkerson
We had the honor of meeting Mr. Cliburn once when my wife translated for Nobuyuki Tsujii during his trip here. What a kind and humble man. Rest in peace.
The angels have gained a great talent and we have lost an amazing man. I wll always remember Van playing in our assemblys at KHS, the kids all loved it when he broke out Bumble Bee Boogie. Rest in pease Dear Van. Joan Crawford Williams KHS class of 51/52.
With deepest sympathy to the Cliburn family during your time of grief...God is for you a refuge and strength, A help that is there to be found during difficult times...May God provide you with peace and comfort to endure the days ahead.
Thank you for your music and your voice in the piano world. RIP - make beautiful music in heaven.
I was so blessed to have seen him perform in Austin - twice. Both times were magical but the first more so. He played Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto for us (me). To this day when that piece is played on the local classical station, I go back to that very magical night. Thank you for your contributions to our music. You will be missed!
So sad to hear of Van Cliburn's passing. I've always been a fan. He and I share a birthday - July 12th. One very special birthday night I had the honor of attending a concert that he gave at Tanglewood in The Berkshires. I'll never forget that birthday. Rest in peace!
May the family rely on the God of all comfort during this time.
I went to a Cliburn concert at Princeton in 1965, where he played the Chopin "Heroic" Polonaise as an encore. I made it a goal to play that piece myself. (Needless to say, my rendition does not approach what he could have done using his feet instead of his hands.) But I still cherish the memory of having seen and heard him live.
May you find comfort in the Hearer of prayer during this time. Psalm 65:2
Fort Worth will miss the talent and compassion of this truly gental man.
A grace bestowed upon us from heaven.....right in the cold war.....a man such as he arrives to break the bread between Russia+ us.....greatness...
Dear Van - thank you for the joy of music you brought to our lives. Now it's the angels in heaven who will get their chance to hear your music.
Prayers to his friends and family. What a loss but we are blessed with his recorded performances, memories and legacies. I recall seeing Mr. Cliburn perform then meeting him afterward at a childrens concert at Soldiers and Sailors Hall in Pittsburgh, Pa. I would see him perform again in later years. What a brilliant mind, gifted and blessed pianist and person. Thank you Mr. Cliburn.
Mr. Kliburn, I first heard of you on 'King of The Hill' because of Dale Gribble. RIP, sir.
Van, your loving soul will live in our memories forever. I knew your mother and father and know how much you loved them. It was my joy to drive back to Texas with them after you played with the NY Phil after winning the Levintritt. Also the long train ride from Dallas to NY when we were studying with Rosina. Many, many other happy memories. You left us too soon, but what you left with us will enrich the world for many years to come.
He was a Great Musician.I was only a few years younger the Mr.Cliburn.My mother who died yrs ago loved him also.It is said to see him leave us.He will be playing with the Angels,and they will love Him.
My mother had an album of yours. I studied piano one summer with your nephew Marshall, who looks so much like you. Thank you for your gift of music and humanity.
Fort Worth and the world will dearly miss this man who brought culture to Cowtown.
Thank you, Mr. Cliburn, for the many wonderful years of beautiful music. Your talent and contribution to the world of music will never be forgotten
Heavenly Father, the softest spoken, the kind and loving Van is with You and his dear Mom---and, for all of us, left behind with his grandeur music memories, may that sweet smile and dancing eyes, and flying fingers never leave our lives, blessed by the talent and love of music by Van Cliburn. From another Fort Worth neighbor, now retired in AR, I heard via WBAP radio.
You were the biggest hero to me I ever had and when I was blessed to become your friend, it was the most exciting thing I ever knew. I so agree and wish along with the Petronis that God welcomes you to his Heavenly Kingdom. Amen.
I heard Van play at Lewisohn Stadium in the Bronx under Kirill Kondrashin. This was following his victory in Moscow. What an inspiration. Cliburn was my reason for becoming a pianist--and I thank him.
Goodbye Van. Every string should be stilled for a moment in time on Earth as the angels sing heralding your arrival in Heaven.
Van Cliburn came to Birmingham to play the Tchaikovsky soon after returning from Moskow. He held a dress rehearsal the night before the concert. I made sure I was there early to get the best seat - about 5 rows up, in the middle, on eye level with Van Cliburn. At one point the conductor stopped,and with his arms still up, said "It must be marvellous to have such power". Van Cliburn cracked up, then they continued. He is one of the most special people in the world for all he has meant and all he has done.
Van Cliburn was a great man, but he always had time to talk with this ordinary person and would smile when I reminded him of our "connection." I lived at 414 S. Martin and he lived at 808 S. Martin in Kilgore. When he came out of "retirement" and played his first concert in Kilgore he thanked me and Kathryn for coming to hear him play. And then he graciously autograph the evening program for our granddaughters. What a talented and great man we were privileged to have in our midst for all these years. He enriched our lives. Morris and Kathryn Matson
You will be missed so much...
I thank God for you and the heavenly music you played for all of us.
The many RCA-Victor Red Seal vinyl recordings I have of this wonderful pianist-truly a "Living Stereo" legend! He will always be remembered. R.I.P. "Vanyiska".
Van Cliburn was my superstar pianist ever since my college years as a piano performance major. I have enjoyed his music and career for more than thirty years.
Mr. Cliburn, thank you for your gift of music, patriotism and love for humanity. May your family and friends find comfort in the beautiful music and memories that you gave to us.
I had the pleasure of a rather unusual encounter with Van Cliburn back in the early 1980's. I was living in Shreveport, LA and was in a local grocery store one late night chatting with a friend who was working the overnight shift. Two gentlemen came in, laughing about a TV show they had been watching. They described watching the comedian Andy Kaufman encounter a professional wrestler and coming out much the worse for wear. We talked and laughed about Kaufman for 15-20 minutes before they said good night and left. I turned to my friend and asked him if he realized who we had been talking with. He was quite surprised when I let him know that we had just spent the last 20 minutes with Van Cliburn. My brief contact with Mr. Cliburn revealed that while he was a world class artist, he was also a warm, friendly and very funny person. The world is a sadder place today for his loss but we still have the memories he left.
My condolences to the entire Cliburn Family/Foundation. It is truly a sad day. The world has lost a gracious, talented humble man.
I was Director of Intermediate Boys Division at Interlochen and Meade Crane who was in my cabin sat in for him until he came for pratice. His concerts were memorable at Interlochen. He will be truly missed. Rik Danburg, Interlochen 1967-1980.
Requiem æternam dona ei, Domine.
Et lux perpetua luceat ei.
Requiescat in pace. Amen.
Earth's loss and heaven's gain...one day we will hear your beautiful music on the other side. I am thankful for the gift of music that you so graciously shared with so many.
We met once at Ol' South Pancake House. I will always cherish the memory of meeting such a wonderful person. May you rest in peace.
Even though this has been a sad day learning that Van Cliburn is no longer with us, he will live in our hearts and minds forever. May he rest in peace in the arms of God.
My prayers are with you, Mr. Cliburn. I will always have such fond memories of you and your music. You were our "dinner music" many times for many years and will now start the trad
ition over again in my mid-life. Thank you for you contribution to world pease. God bless and keep you forever.
Thank you for the wonderful classic music of piano. That is part of my therapy to calm the stress and relax me. I am hard of hearing since birth. I wish you were invite deaf/hard of hearing children at FWISD to learn how to play piano. Remember the famous deaf man named Beethoven? Why not deaf can do this? You will rejoin your brothers and sisters in Christ in Heaven and join with the choir and Jesus and God will love to listen your music from your heart to souls. I surely missed you and wish I meet you in person. God's appointment time for you to go. I pray for all the fans and friends of Van Cliburn will be missed.
This is a sad day for us, but a wonderful reunion for Mr Cliburn and his Mother and Father! I was 12 when I first heard Mr. Cliburn play in Columbus,OH. When I was 14, I timidly ventured backstage to obtain an autograph. Mr. Cliburn signed my program, looked me directly in the eyes and warmly thanked ME before I could thank Him! Well, Mr. Cliburn, from the bottom of my heart, I now thank YOU for giving so much of yourself to others through your enormous talent,kindness, love of music and unconditional love. You will be sorely missed. Linda Kay Russell, Williamsburg, VA
How is this possible? Van will live forever. A great friend and wonderful colleague. I was privileged to have been a juror in the Van Cliburn Competition a long time ago, and to have performed with Van. Last time I saw him was in Los Angeles during a GRAMMY when I conducted at the televised event, and Van received an honorary award.
So many memories...thank you, Jim LeCroy and Jerry Turner
I'm from Shreveport, and grew up hearing stories of Van Cliburn. A good friend, who passed away recently, played with him at his mother's recital at age THREE, his first. My friend would tell how his mother protected his hands, even at that age, would not let him play outside. Though apparently he did! A hero, in many ways, he will be missed.
Peristyle, Libby's gift to Toledo's music aficionados, was SRO when in 1962 Maestro Cliburn performed Chopin, Rachmaninoff, Liszt & DeBussy. I was all of 13, but was swept up in the delirium of the adult audience that bitter cold evening. it was reported, quite facetiously, in the next day's paper, that the heat of Cliburn's performance melted the snow for miles around the venue of his performance. For an encore, Cliburn played Vocalese, and that melody has stayed with me ever since.In 1968 I attended another recital by the Maestro, this time at UT in Austin. Bach, Mozart, and Schubert were never played so sublimely. Memories like this are forever. Auf wiedersehn, Van.
When I learned of Maestro Cliburn's death, I wept, remembering all music's beauty that he brought to me and countless others. My sympathy to his friends and loved ones. I know he will be missed.
I was so very blessed to have seen Van Cliburn perform at the Ohio Theater in Columbus,Ohio in the 70's. I will never forget it. Thank you, sir, for sharing yourself & your remarkable talent with us.
My wife Lucille and I saw Van Cliburn play live at Carnegie Hall in 1991. It was a concert that will live in our memories forever. The single greatest pianist of all time has left us with a treasury of his recordings. May God welcome you to his Kingdom.
I am so blessed to have been born during his lifetime, and followed his career! I find it hard to believe that, as he was four years younger than I am, he has gone before me! His talent was so admirable!!
The first classical album my husband purchased in the Air Force was one of Mr. Cliburn's. In 1977 he had a ticket to see Van at Ravinia in Illinois. He was going to university and working full time and didn't go to the concert assuming Van would return the next year; alas he retired from performing in 1978. But years later in 1994 by which time we had met and married we had the enormous joy of seeing him perform at Wolf Trap in Virginia - it was one of the highlights of our lives. I always tease my husband that he married me because Van and I shared the same July 12 birthday. He was a gift to the musical world and will be deeply missed
Mr. Cliburn was a customer of mine when I waitressed at a Ft. Worth restaurant about 20 years ago. He was so kind and pleasant, and would be more than happy to sign autographs to anyone who asked. Thank you, Van Cliburn, for gracing this planet with your presence and generosity of spirit!
What a tremendous lost of a great pianist and a cultural icon. Were it not for Van Cliburn's extraordinary and inspirational achievements, it might well have been impossible for me and countless others to have lived, studied in, and performed in the Soviet Union. Thank you, Mr. Cliburn, for coming to us,and my sincere condolences to his friends, family and not least, the staff of the Van Cliburn Foundation and Competition. --John Bell Young
You shared a blessed talent with the world,everlasting music. Rest in peace.
You brought the music to life. Thank you and play for the angels.
Dear Van, I believe with all my heart that you were an angel sent by God to us here on earth as you brought so much beauty and light to the world during such dark and troubling times. You earned your wings - now fly!! Thank you for playing my encore requests, especially "Widmung." No one will ever play that as beautifully as you. I cherish the note you wrote for me in Huntsville in '98 - I am looking at it now. I will never forget your kindness. You were so very, very special. I will love you always.
Van, we loved the music then, we love the music now, and we will love the music always.
My sincere condolence for the loss of Van your dear loved one. May your fond memories of him bring much comfort. Peace and love to your family and friends, and to the spirit that you show. firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you, though only 7 when you brought honor to our country with your music presentation, I wanted to do it too. My teacher from Poland and I Hungarian...my heart still is drawn to the Russians. Their music the voice for words they dared not say aloud. Heaven is celebrating as tonight the music of the Russians now has 100 of its favored pianist playing! Bravo! Bravo!
What a kind, thoughtful,& talented person we will all miss. I would like to share some fond memories of Van. He was a member of First Baptist Church in Shreveport when I was a teenager. Van gave a Steinway concert grand piano to our church, & gave a dedication concert in the sanctuary. I attended his concerts every time he played in Shreveport. He was my hero of the music world when all my friends were Beatle fans. My piano teacher, Nina Plant Wideman, introduced us. As a teen, I baked a cake for his birthday, delivered it to his home on Wilder Pl. & got to visit with him for an hour in his living room. His entire living room was full of trophies, along with two Steinway grands. I used to bake him brownies & deliver them backstage before his concerts. One time he invited me to stand behind the stage curtain during his entire concert, where I could watch his fingers race across the keys! I will always remember how kind he was to a teenage girl who was "crazy" over him! My deepest sympathy to the family of Van. He is now happily reunited with his beloved parents in Heaven.
Thank you, Van Cliburn, for introducing me to my lifelong love--the classical piano. Rest in peace.
Thank You for a lifetime of fine music. Condolences to the family.
I am so sad to hear of Mr. Cliburn's passing. He was a hugely talented artist. I once spoke with him on the phone in the 1970's. He was in San Jose, CA. doing a concert. Our piano moving company moved a piano for him. He was a very nice man & will be missed terribly.
Beautiful music! Praying that the Cliburn family has comfort & peace during this difficult time.
So sorry to see this notice today. Van Cliburn was one of the first great young pianists we remember as we grew up.He will be sorely missed.
The Smiths inSC
Van Cliburn's Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto #1 was the first album I ever bought. I loved it so much.
Mr Cliburn when I was a child my two sisters and I got to watch a performance by you with the Utah Symphony and got to meet you afterward. You and your mother were so gracious and kind to us.
Rest in Peace Mr Cliburn.
To Van Cliburn.
You were a great pianist. My prayers are with you MR. Cliburn. Lisa Weiner
My heart rate doubled when I read the headline. You did so much for our city, our country, and our entire world that any more humble words from me about it would be redundant. It is an unspeakably fortunate pleasure to have met you even once, twice more to have shaken the hand with which you've done so much. One can only hope to achieve in two centuries what you have done in one, graceful lifetime. In pace requiescat, maestro!
The music in Heaven is now more beautiful as Mr. Cliburn is there.
Thanks for making this world beatiful with your music.
My heartfelt condolences. When I was an adolescent learning to play classical music, Mr. Cliburn was my idol. I had the great fortune to listen to him play at Southern Illinois University eons ago. It was one of the most memorable moments of my life. He has remained my hero pianist without compare. God bless.
I was blessed by a friend who took me to a Van Cliburn Competition one year for my birthday. It was one of the most exciting experiences of my life. What a miraculous event for Mr. Cliburn to have established for young very talented pianists. Thank you Mr. Cliburn for your many gifts, talent and generosity.
This year's competition will mean so much more than usual.
The penultimate pianist and gentleman...so fortunate to have had the opportunity to meet him when I was on staff at a local university. We shall miss his beautiful voice as well. May we always listen with gratitude to the wonderful recordings he left.
So much life in this great man. I chatted with Mr. Cliburn several times at the Worthington Hotel in Fort Worth.
"When I die I hope to have concert tickets in the sky" to see your next show.
Thank God for a giant in the music industry, the Lord commanded, "Play skillful with the string instruments", and I believe that we have witness a musician that tried to do just that. May his contribution to the music industry continue in recorded media, inspiring other musicians to do their very best.
Willie Felix Carter
Lead Guitarist for Men of Vision Choir of Los Angeles, CA, and a Candidate for President of the United States of America 2016
So sorry for the loss of your loved one. May the God of all comfort be with you all during this difficult time. Isaiah 59:1
Mr. Cliburn, you will be missed. Thank you for supporting me as a musician, and helping me with your scholarships during my college years. You have blessed the world by sharing your music with us. Rest in peace. God bless you.
A fellow hometown musician,
Jane Arthur Roberts
When I think of Van Cliburn, the first thing that pops into my mind is kindness.
Thank you for the beautiful music and expression left behind in your yearly contest.
I am so blessed to see Van perform in Tampa, FL, I shall always remember that performance.
The Van Cliburn Piano Competition will not be the same. While his presence will be greatly missed, his spirit will forever be present in the competition. This year's competition will be especially emotional to everyone. Rest in Peace, Van.
Sweet Van, dear friend, great musician, thanks for the memories.
My deepest sympathy to his family.
A great loss. The summer of 1950 I attended summer classes at Kilgore College. On a long break between classes I would sit on the porch of the music building to hear Van Cliburn practice, which he did every day. It was wonderful! He apparently was also taking some summer course and that is why he was at the campus.
Rest in peace. A true artist
A tremendous talent is now gone. I was blessed to hear him play live once when I was young. May his friends and family always have the great memories of this musical giant.
I am so sorry for the loss of your loved one. Please find peace and comfort in Psalms 65:2.
Rest Quietly, my dear cousin. I remember fondly my last visit to your lovely home so many years ago--drinking scotch and smoking cigarettes just shy of Aunt Rildabee's view, admiring the wonderfully decorated Christmas trees in what seemed to be in every room of the house and laughing with you about life and family. My mother (RIP) was always so proud of you;I was always and still am in awe of your talent and your gentle spirit. You will remain in my heart until my end of days.
I remember when he won in Russia in 1958.
I saw him in person in Fort Worth at the convention center in the 60's. When he played the National Anthem I wanted to scream out as if I were at a Rock concert. I just adorned him. J Kennedy
May his friends be comforted.
My sincenre condolances to the family.
A Fort Worth original. Thank you for all of your contributions to our city.
We will miss our dear friend Van. Rest in peace--you are the sweetest, most elegant, and most generous soul we know.
Van was such an inspiration to everyone, not just pianists but singers too. He was such a gentleman in every sense of the word. Caroling for him was a real treat. Prayers go out to Tom and the rest of the family.
He gave so much to the world. He was wonderfully made by God.
Such a loss of talent. We are fortunate that he brought such beauty of music to our world. Our sympathies to his family and friends.
He is and will remain the standard by which Classical Music & pianists will be measured. God bless his family and friends. I have several albums that I still play... now even more treasured.
So long to my inspirational mentor. You will be missed but never forgotten!
My condolences to his family. He was a fabulous pianist.RG
As a high school student In the70's I owned one Van Cliburn album among my Janis Joplin, Elton John and The Who. I listened to it nightly as I did my homework and created art in my bedroom. I knew nothing about him yet was inspired by his wonderful talent. I just listened to that same album last night. His music will always be special to me. Thank you Van Cliburn. I never knew you but I know you.
Gregg Renda, Shreveport, LA
In loving memory of a wonderful person. We will love you and miss you always.
What an extraordinary talent. Angles are playing for him now.
May the family, friends, and fans of Van Cliburn have comfort knowing that God is near those broken at heart; And those who are crushed in spirit he saves.
He was a Texan that we can all be proud. He was example of A very fine and kind man.
First classical piano I ever heard. It was 1968 and I was six years old. I still have that tape and Van Cliburn inspired us all with his music and life. My Condolences to Mr. Cliburn's family.
I was attending Kilgore College in 1958 when Van Cliburn gave a concert on campus. He ask the audience if we wanted to hear his Competition in Moscow which would last for almost an hour, or a variety of several different pieces. Of course, the audience wanted the Competition. I sat through the performance spell bound. Thank you, Van for a wonderful memory.
He will sorely be missed I remember hearing him play at Waterloo Village in Byram Township NJ. At that concert the Doves of Peace by Bohem Pottery in Trenton NJ were on the stage with him when he played it was like this beautiful piece of porclein moved with his music, the Doves of Peace were later taken to China as a gift from the American people by President Nixon. He is playing for the angels now how lucky they are.
As a young girl I was priviledged to hear Mr. Cliburn play in my church on Sunday evening. It was like nothing I had ever hear before. He was a gracious as he was gifted. He patienly stood and listened to me as expressed how much I had enjoyed his performance. Then as was his way he encouraged me to find the gift God had given me and use it. Heaven I know rings out with sweet piano melodies today!
Van Cliburn made a tremendous difference in the world of classical piano music with his vision of the competition that bears his name. Countless young pianists will benefit from this vision, as will the listeners. I have been to the competition almost every year for many years, and plan to go again this year.
Van Cliburn's legacy and his wonderful playing will live on in our hearts. Thanks for the memories!
It was a pleasure to know Van and to work with him on the Van Cliburn Competition in the beginning. His legend will live on with the many people he inspired. So many good memories.
Thank you for sharing your marvelous talent with the rest of us. Rest in peace.
Sweet peace to you, Mr. Cliburn. My heart is heavy that you have gone out of this world. You were a good man.
OSU campus in 1964. He played in an old auditorium on a chilly winter night. Rachmoninoff never sounded so beautiful. One of my favorite memories. We'll not see his like again.
Truely a gift from God to us here on earth, now taken to Heaven where all pain & sorrow has passed away..Thank you so much Mr. Cliburn for the beautiful music..God bless the family..Rest in eternal peace..
Celebrating a life well lived. We will cherish the memories forever.
from Kilgore Texas all around the world.
A musical giant. Your legacy lives on.
I was raised in Ft Worth and remember Van as a gentle soul and the wonderful music he perfomed God Bless he is now free fom pain and he is performing before God and our savior.
I had the honor of seeing him in concert a couple of years ago. He was absolutely magical. May you grace heaven with an eternity of beautiful music.
My condolences to the family. May God comfort and strengthen you during this difficult time.
Thank you for your contributions to Fort Worth and the world. What a splendid example of a wonderful human being.
I was priviledged to hear Van Cliburn in Knoxville, TN in my youth. I can still see the image of his impressive presence and how he played with such emotion. He was a gift, and united, at least in music, America and Russia during such a disturbing political time. He will be sadly missed.
I watched him play back in the 60's at Chautauqua Institute, and got to see him "close up", down at the College Club there. What a true talent, and good showman for his craft. You can tell when a craftsman of any art, both enjoys what they do, and the reason they do it. Deepest sympathy to his family and friends. A gifted musician has left us.
My sincere condolences to the family. May God give you power beyond what is normal to help you to endure the loss of your dear love one. 2 Corinthian 4:7
Back when I was growing up, we didn't have "500 Channels!" on TV; we did not have the iPhone; we did not have the internet. But we did have VanCliburn, and people like him, playing for us on the few channels that we did have--playing for all of us Americans. I think our lives were far richer in those days. Whether Americans realize it or not, we are all poorer today.
RIP Van Cliburn.
may you rest in peace and all of yur suffering is over now and you can play in heaven for everyone mr. van. rose ann lourwood
RIP & thank you for your influence on appreciating classical music… †
His tremendous success and early recordings were an inspiration to young pianists and students during the 1960s. I met him and his mother after a recital he gave in Ottawa at the new National Arts Centre in 1969; both were gracious and charming.
Such a talent!! Music from heaven. God bless. Heartfelt condolences to family.
With deepest sympathy. Good night, sweet prince.
May he rest in peace, and enjoy the riches of heaven!
What a life.
Something to really celebrate.
He will be greatly missed.
Mr. Cliburn's death is a huge loss to the music/piano community. As a pianist and a person, I am mourning his passing. Susan Duschatko
We were fortunate enough to meet Van at the Worthington Hotel where is he having breakfast with Red Skelton. They both were so gracious to our family. A fine gentleman.
God gave us a wonderful pianist to play to the world, now he has taken you to play for the heavens. God Bless Mr. Cliburn, your contribution and love of music to the world transcends all cultures.
RIP your beautiful music will be missed!
Heaven is now enjoying your talent!
What an honor to meet and spend time with a true legend. My heart goes out to Tommy and all his wonderful friends.
May your hearts soon be filled with wonderful memories of joyful times together as you celebrate a life well lived. We really enjoyed his music.
GOOD LIFE. YOU DIED TOO YOUNG.
His music will always stay with us. We will miss him.
My sincere condolences to his family. I attended the first Cliburn competition in the early 60s with my piano teacher, and it was an amazing and formative experience for me. His legacy is international, but for this Fort Worth native, he leaves music in my hands and inspiration to so many others.
I so enjoyed singing for you and with you several years ago. God speed.
Thank you for your expression of beauty and truth in music and your life
May God be with the family and provide peace at this time of mourning. Let his memories bring a smile to your faces. God Bless!
I was fortunate to meet him as we were going into the evening services of the Calvary Baptist Church in July, 1968. He played for services there from time to time. It was a highlight of time spent in New York City. He was the best!
I had the pleasure of meeting and shaking hands with the Maestro in the DFW Airport - he was not difficult to recognize. I told what a pleasure it was to meet him and he responded - 'you have made my day.' So very gracious a comment to an admirer. This a loss from which the world will NEVER recover.
The world has lost a treasure. Heaven's music just became more beautiful.
He has departed this world for a better one, but his wonderful music will live forever.
People may not realize that he was wanted for a basketball career, but his Mother explained that his hands were insured for the piano. they were a great team.
Rest in peace, Van. You will now accompany the angels with your beautiful music.
I never met Mr. Cliburn, but I played piano as a child when he was beginning his career. He was always an inspiration to me and he made a difference in my life, even though he never knew it. I now teach music education at a university. I think that part of my world was molded by his life model. He will always be an inspiration.
First saw VanCliburn in concert at The Saratoga Performing Arts Center in the early 60's.....a marvelous gentleman with so much talent. I dont think the world will ever realize his contributions to our relationships with Russia or his talents for the Performing Arts. We have lost a true gem. My Sympathy to his family and friends.
Such a great loss. Van Cliburn was my inspiration; a joyful life with the piano. What a glorious Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 2 he played! God Bless you and your family.
Bless you, Van Cliburn, for being one of music's - and America's - biggest ambassadors. You will definitely be missed. My deepest sympathy for your family and closest friends. The musical community has lost a great musician, and we have all lost a beautiful man.
Van, your level of impeccable musicianship has inspired me since I was a child. Thank you for raising the bar for all pianists with your virtuosity. You will live on forever as one of the greatest pianists that ever lived! God bless!
The Rachmaninoff concerto was the first album I received from my grandmother as a child in 1961. But my greatest memory was his 1970 performance at Chautauqua Institute, NY - the walked on the stage and played the National Anthem... I can close my eyes and still hear the anthem... and my most treasured possession is an autographed picture from a 1970 concert in Indianapolis. Yes, in the 1970's I wanted to be a Van Cliburn groupie. His contributions to music and music education will be missed.
God looked down with His infinite mercy took one more Angel,plucked as a flower to brighten His beautiful garden.Hearfelt condolences,admiration and sympathy. God gave us a gift and
we thank God for the talent He gave him.
Scotty and Sue Waters
My heart goes out to the family. You were the greatest pianist of all time. You inspired me at a very young age to take up playing the piano. I love you and may you rest in peace playing the big piano in the sky.
So sad to loose a great pianist with passion for great music. Our hearts are full of sympathy.
I was fortunate to attend the Cliburn competition when I lived in Fort Worth in the 1980's. It was a magnificent experience. You left your mark on the world, Mr. Cliburn. Bravo! Rest in Peace.
My acquaintance with Van was brief, but his grace and generosity of spirit left a lasting impression upon me. He was a great pianist, he was an even greater peacemaker. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.
may God be with you and your family. you are in peaceful.
He is the reason piano music is my favorite music! He was a very talented and classy man.
I am so sorry to hear about the loss of such a wonderful person! I hope that you will allow the hope that the bible provides to bring all those in your family comfort at this time. Rom 15:4
For the Fort Worth man, that took Russia's heart.
My prayers are with you as you mourn this great loss. Peace and blessings be with you.
RIP my friend. God is being entertained by the finest!
THANK YOU FOR MANY YEARS OF GREAT MUSIC
one of my favorites.....rest in peace....thanks for the memories......
My condolences to the entire Cliburn Family/Foundation. It is such a sad day for our community. The world has lost a gracious, talented, humble man. Attending his Fort Worth performance in 1973 is one of the highlights of my musical studies.
What a Human Being! Always appraising and confident, but most of all exceedingly Gracious. Thank you Van Cliburn for sharing your life with us!
My dad Mike Judge sure enjoyed getting to know you when he helped you at the Men's Wearhouse. Such a gentleman with class. RIP Sir.
Thank you sir for all you've accomplished. Thank you for elevating the status of Fort Worth and the inspiration of thousands.
The world will miss you. God Bless you and rest in peace. As I sat listening to one of the Cliburn competitions I wondered what it must sound like in heaven when God's orchestra plays and the angels sing. The magnitude I couldn't quit imagine. But I imagine this man amongst them now.