The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music: Pianist Howard Karp, who taught at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has died at 84. | July 1, 2014

By Jacob Stockinger

Late last night, The Ear received the following message and photographs from Parry Karp, who teaches cello at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music and who performs with the Pro Arte String Quartet:

“On Monday morning June 30, 2014 pianist and UW-Madison Emeritus Professor Howard Karp died at the Medical Center of the Rockies in Loveland, Colorado, of complications of cardiac arrest. He was 84, and was surrounded by his wife Frances and his two sons Parry and Christopher.”

Here are Frances and Howard Karp on June 22, 2014:

Frances and Howard Karp June 22, 2014

Here are Howard Karp and Parry Karp on New Year’s Eve, 2013.

Howard Karp and Parry Karp New Year's Eve 2013

Here is Howard Karp in 2000, in a photo taken by Katrin Talbot, the wife of Parry Karp.

Howard Karp ca. 2000 by Katrin Talbot

Here are the hands of Howard Karp in a photo taken by Katrin Talbot:

Howard Karp's hands by Katrin Talbot

Here is Howard Karp at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam in 1968:

Howard Karp at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw in 1968

Here is Howard Karp ca. 1958:

Howard Karp ca 1958 2

Here is Howard Karp ca. 1955:

Howard Karp ca. 1955

And here is Howard Karp ca. 1942:

Howard Karp ca. 1942

I will have more to say about the gifted performer and teacher Howard Karp, and so will the many students and friends he had in Madison and elsewhere during his long career.

But please leave your recollections and memories as well as condolences and good wishes in the REPLY or COMMENT section.

In the meantime, here is an excerpt, a movement from a sonata by Franz Schubert, from the 6-CD retrospective of live recordings by Howard Karp that was released on May 31 by Albany Records:

 


77 Comments »

  1. Professor Howard Karp was my teacher from 1966 to 1969 at the U. of Illinois. He was not just a great teacher but a very caring man also. He even showed me how to use a credit card to get into his studio so that I could practice on his piano whenever he was not using his studio. My lessons were always very fun and informative. His amazing playing of Beethoven’s Hammerklavier Sonata and the Brahms Piano Concerto No.1 were still deeply etched into my mind. I was sad and shock to learn of Prof. Karp’s passing from Ronald and Barbara Shinn yesterday. He will always be in my mind as a great teacher as well as a wonderful caring human being also. My deepest sympathy to Frances, Parry, Christopher and all of the Karp family.
    Amy Wong, Santa Rosa, CA

    Comment by Amy Wong — July 27, 2014 @ 1:48 pm

  2. Howard Karp was the single greatest person and musical inspiration I have ever had the good fortune to meet and study with. His strength of character and deeply artistic being have been a beacon of light for me as a person and as a pianist ever since I met him in 1972, and everyone else I know who studied with him feel the same. My wife Barbara and I were so fortunate to be there when he performed the Liszt b minor Sonata (and I believe it was that performance that was later included on the Art of Karp CD) and many other works. I have for years shared the Liszt with my students who rave about his wonderful rendition. Our pianist son Michael and his lovely pianist wife Jessica (who grew up in Madison and whose family attended many Karp family concerts) had never personally met Howard and Francis until just this past Christmas when we were all there and able to introduce our kids – and their brand-new baby – to the Karps – we are so delighted for these precious moments together. While we have all lost such a great artist and person, and we grieve so much for Francis, Parry and Christopher, what a legacy has been created by this fine person and wonderful family full of great musicians. We are deeply saddened by this loss and send condolences to the Francis and the entire family.

    Comment by Ronald Shinn — July 14, 2014 @ 9:42 pm

  3. Dear Frances, Parry, Christopher,

    I am deeply saddened by his passing, and send my heartfelt condolences to your entire family–the “von Trapps” of the classical music world. Howard was all we aspired to be, and set the bar that only his towering stature could reach. I had the honor of being his first DMA student at UW and remember vividly my trek up to his studio. I was greeted by “honest Abe”, and that wonderful smile of his. From then on a lifetime friendship ensued, and I was the beneficiary of his fountain of knowledge. There is a famous quote by Rachmaninoff: “music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music”, Howard came closer than anyone in his lifetime!
    Periodically, we would exchange postal packets filled with programs, articles, family updates, etc. Ironically,
    I had sent a packet to Madison the week before he died. I was so proud to share with him my tour in China but I realize now he never saw it. He was always so proud of the success of his offspring–of his students and his incredibly talented family.
    Labor Day this year will be difficult. We will all miss him, but we have so many fabulous memories, and his wonderful recordings. I will never forget his first recital in Madison: Bach D Major, Schubert C Minor, and Liszt B Minor. That will live forever with me.
    Joe Di Piazza

    Comment by Joe Di Piazza — July 14, 2014 @ 11:56 am

  4. Howard also had a playful side to his personality.

    After my Senior Recital, University of Illinois in 1970, I
    invited family, friends, and Howard and Francis to an
    old fashioned ice cream parlor for my after recital reception.

    We were all enjoying ourselves, and then Howard spotted a player piano in the corner which had pneumatic foot pedals, the kind you had to push up and down to get the thing playing. With a broad smile, Howard sat down and pumped furiously, laughing and
    delighted in the contraption’s ragtime repertoire.

    Howard Karp, famous for his interpretations of the “Hammerklavier”, Diabelli Variations, and the Liszt Sonata also became a Master in the “Art of the Piano Player”.

    We will miss him greatly,

    Robert Novota

    Comment by Robert Novota — July 11, 2014 @ 4:16 pm

  5. I want to express my deepest sympathy to the Karp family. I was at the U.W. when Prof. Karp began teaching there and, from the beginning, he stood out as one of the finest teachers and musicians in the school. I still recall a brief conversation I had with him once because of the wisdom and insight he showed, and because of the friendly way he spoke to me even though he didn’t know me. Howard Karp is the very definition of a life well-lived.

    Comment by Alice Thompson Williams — July 9, 2014 @ 11:17 am

  6. For me, Howard was a remarkable combination of nobility, empathy, wisdom and youthful enthusiasm. A truly good person, he made me want to be a better man.

    Phillip Lehrman

    Comment by Phillip Lehrman — July 8, 2014 @ 4:18 pm

  7. To me he was larger than life, an icon. I daresay he is now in heaven discussing fingerings and phrasing with Franz Liszt!

    He will remain forever in our hearts…

    Comment by Barbara Shinn — July 8, 2014 @ 9:11 am

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  9. A fellow Howard Karp student shared with me today the sad news about the passing of our piano professor, Howard Karp. The music profession has lost a very special teacher and pianist.
    In 1965 I auditioned for the MM degree at the University of Illinois, Urbana. My Indiana University friend David Mulfinger strongly recommended that I contact Howard Karp and secure a studio interview with him. Forty-seven years later, during a summer visit, Howard Karp remembered that my MM audition included the Liszt Rigoletto Paraphrase!! Being in Howard Karp’s studio for my Masters degree was a very fortunate, positive turning point in my life. The characteristics that come to mind to describe Howard Karp are: consummate musician, – dedicated, knowledgeable, engaged teacher, – professional role model, – and amiable, caring mentor.
    Only after I entered the teaching profession did I fully understand and appreciate how very special Howard Karp was. Where did he find the time and energy to give to his students so generously and still remain extremely active as a performer? My weekly two-hour lessons with him were not an exception. He gave all of his graduate students that level of attention. I will also never forget those arduous Saturday repertoire performance classes. Howard Karp’s love of the repertoire was contagious. Those classes were models of support and encouragement. I have fond memories of the many times he had us over to his house for socials
    He, of course, is still with us through his recordings. My favorites are the Liszt B minor Sonata, Beethoven’s 33 variations on a Waltz by Diabelli and of course, the piano repertoire of Schubert. I will always remember his humility. I remember him revealing to a group of us that he had revived Beethoven’s Hammerklavier Sonata, Opus 106, ten different times over his career and the tenth performance was as difficult as the first.
    Howard Karp’s hand-written detailed letters to former students seem especially remarkable. I live with guilt for only sending him a generic, yearly Holiday newsletter with a sentence or two written at the bottom and then always receiving a long, hand-written response from him about his family, his professional performances, as well as his continuing interest in my activities. I know, from talking with other former students, that this type of attention from him was typical.
    I am profoundly grateful that I had the opportunity to have a Madison meal and visit with Howard and Frances two summers ago. I will be forever appreciative of the wonderful guidance he provided me at a very crucial time in my education, as well as the generous encouragement he has given me throughout my career. I hope his family will find comfort in the enormous legacy he left to the music world.

    Please advise if there are plans for a public service or memorial concert. I would love to attend.

    Paul Stewart

    Comment by Paul Stewart — July 6, 2014 @ 8:40 pm

  10. We are so sorry. Our hearts go out to you and your lovely family.
    We’ve been playing this beautiful Schubert piece over & again.
    We had the good fortune of attending a magnificent performance by Howard, Frances & Parry Karp @ UW not long ago and will always feel enriched by it.
    He seemed to be such a supportive grandfather & we will miss his frequent company in the audience @ Young Shakespeare Players Theater.
    We hope your memories summon some solace in during this sad time.
    Azul & Ocean Sphaera

    Comment by Azul Sphaera — July 6, 2014 @ 12:53 pm

  11. I am deeply saddened to hear of Howard’s passing. What a remarkable man and musician who influenced and inspired the lives of so many. I feel so very fortunate to have studied with him and will always remember his kindness, his warm gentle nature and his incredible ability to teach and inspire his students. My deepest sympathy to Frances, Parry, Christopher and all of the Karp family.

    Charles Goan

    Comment by Charles Goan — July 6, 2014 @ 8:38 am

  12. Howard Karp was an irreplaceable man and musician. He really stood out, not only because of his physical height, but because he was so unique–in a way like music itself–that words are inadequate to describe. I have rarely witnessed someone so dedicated and inspiring, full of equal parts reverence (for composers like Schubert and colleagues such as Gunnar Johansen) and enthusiasm (for his students, for music–both obscure and canonical, and life in general). I count myself very fortunate to be among those to have known Howard and to retain many indelible memories of experiences he recounted and shared on different occasions, from being Van Cliburn’s classmate in Rosina Lhevinne’s class (remembering particularly his “Winter Wind” Etude of Chopin), lessons with his teacher Jack Radunsky at Oberlin, and hearing one of Rachmaninoff’s live performances in 1942 as a young man. Once when he might be running a few minutes late for a lesson Howard left a note for me on his door saying, “If you should not see me right at 3:30, just wait a bit and I will appear–man muss Geduld haben!” The Pro Arte Quartet had been going through the cycle of Beethoven Quartets in concerts that year and Howard and I had discussed Beethoven’s use of “Es muss sein!” in the final quartet. One is reminded of what Josef Hofmann said of Rachmaninoff when thinking of Howard, his stature both as a man and musician, and the spirit of generosity in which he lived his life: “he was made of steel and gold; steel in his arms, gold in his heart. I can never think of his majestic being without tears in my eyes, for I not only admired him as a supreme artist, but I also loved him as a man.”

    Comment by Solon Pierce — July 5, 2014 @ 10:00 pm

  13. A great light has gone out in the Madison music community. We were blessed to have this gem in our community over the years and his contribution to making us all better musicians and better listeners will last for years to come.

    Comment by Mark Barrett — July 4, 2014 @ 7:40 pm

  14. Dear Parry and family,

    My father just told me of your loss, and I just wanted to let you know my thoughts and prayers are with you. I always felt privileged to share such a special connection with your family, Howard being my father’s teacher and Parry being my teacher. I know that through my father, I also got direct transmission of Howard’s teaching and musicality, so I feel in a way that he was my teacher, too. And of course, Parry gave me another dose of that, so I feel doubly blessed for the way that Howard has enriched my own musical life from behind the scenes. I always enjoyed the Karp family concerts, and it certainly won’t be the same without Howard. What I most love about Howard’s playing was his intense focus and passion, he was completely absorbed in the music like no one else, almost to a fanatical level, which was mesmerizing to watch. He literally became the music, and had such high standards for bringing it to life in the most exacting way. He has certainly left a legacy behind, and will be sorely missed by many. It is unfortunate that you could not have enjoyed at least a few more years with him, that his heart gave out too soon. I do believe that we all go when we are meant to, but saying that doesn’t make it easier. Many blessings to you all as you transition through your loss, and blessings to Howard’s soul. He was a great man.

    Much love, Deanna Simonson

    Comment by Deanna Simonson Nd — July 4, 2014 @ 5:52 pm

  15. I knew Professosr Karp only as a member of the audience at many, many of the concerts he and his family gave, mostly in Mills Hall. What a wonderful musician! Madison has lost a treasure.

    Comment by Lewy Olfson — July 4, 2014 @ 1:28 pm

  16. Very sad news. My heartfelt condolences to the Karp family. I was so fortunate to have him as my teacher when I was an undergraduate student in UW School of Music. He was so generous and loving. He inspired me to treasure each opportunity to play music with families and friends. I will never forget his smile.

    Comment by Wendy — July 4, 2014 @ 9:39 am

  17. So sorry to hear of the passing of Howard …he was truly a wonderful teacher and so many folks are richer for having been taught by this talented musician. My sincere condolences to Howard’s family.

    Comment by Barb Zahn — July 3, 2014 @ 10:55 pm

  18. My deep sympathy for Howard’s family and all that were dear to him. As we began the series of Sunday Afternoon At The Museum, broadcast on WHA, Howard was one of the first to give it his “hands” and support! What a gentle man and so full of talent! He will be greatly missed!

    Comment by Margie Mee — July 3, 2014 @ 6:14 pm

  19. Howard Karp was an outstanding musical scholar, teacher and performer of the utmost integrity. His inspired performances were characterized by beauty of tone and abandon to and love of the music.

    Howard was my teacher, colleague, mentor and friend. I always appreciated his energy, enthusiasm and positive support. He was a gentleman and much more a gentle man.

    My thoughts are with Frances, Parry, Christopher and their families. Richard Scott

    Comment by Richard Scott — July 3, 2014 @ 3:42 pm

  20. The Karp family has been at the center of Madison’s life for as long as we can remember. Howard was the patriarch, a father not only to his family but to so many musicians and music lovers. He was also a man of personal warmth and true humanity. We are scheduled to move to Capitol Lakes later this month, and we were looking forward to getting to know Howard better there. Now, alas, we must deliver our personal condolences to Frances. But to all the Karp family, we send our sympathies, and our assurance that, under Howard, they have been led to make Madison and the world a truly better place. – John and Margaret Barker — July 3, 2014, 1:22 p.m.

    Comment by John W. Barker — July 3, 2014 @ 1:22 pm

  21. I have never met a kinder, more humble and extraordinary human being than Howard Karp. He was exceptional in every sense of the word. Having the beautiful recordings of his consummate music-making will continue to bring me comfort and remind me of all that is beautiful in this life.

    I have been thinking of dozens of wonderful memories of him. I will miss the joy that he brought just by being in the room, the way that he immersed himself when listening to music (always with a beautiful smile on his face, appreciating live music more than anyone I’ve ever encountered), his extraordinary stories from hearing and encountering Rachmaninoff to recalling the program of a former student from 30 years ago, his unparalleled artistry and gorgeous sound (has anyone ever generated such a beautiful sonority from a percussion instrument?), and his generosity and humility.

    Sending Parry, Frances, Chris, Katrin, Arianna, Natasha, Isabel and all of the Karp family my deepest condolences, love and sympathy. Know that you are loved and that we are here for you.

    Comment by Jess Johnson — July 3, 2014 @ 9:23 am

  22. How sad to hear this news. Howard will always remain an icon of musicianship as well as a stellar fellow for so very many of us. I shall always remember our reminiscences about Chicago days at the Fine Arts Center and our childhood piano teachers and his gloriously wonderful stories with exquisite detail. I shall so miss our daily fitness center connections – such a wonderful accompaniment to our exercises! I cherish the last contact we had – he provided for me (in a brown paper bag!) his latest CD with a sensitive and touching note. His encouragement about my cds and piano work was steadfast and kind and generous. Such a terrible loss for us. My heartfelt condolences for the family and all of us.

    Comment by Myrna Casebolt — July 3, 2014 @ 7:41 am

  23. Dear Parry and family,

    We were so sorry to hear of Howard’s passing. He was not only a brilliant musician but also a warm and cheerful individual and a very gracious and generous colleague. We will all miss him. Please know that you are in our thoughts.

    Pam Potter and Rob Radwin

    Comment by Pam Potter — July 2, 2014 @ 5:28 pm

  24. “He is a prince of a man.” That’s what my father would say, but only about very special individuals.Yes, Howard was a prince of a man.

    Comment by Ginny Moore Kruse — July 2, 2014 @ 2:56 pm

  25. I am first cousin of Howard. We spent almost every Sunday together growing up. I took classical piano lessons with Howard as my inspiration but wasn’t very good at it. We would delight when Howard would play for us at family gatherings. His Bar Mitzvah encouraged me to pursue Jewish knowledge and I always looked up to him as the “gentle giant” which was one of the compliments given to him by those who knew his talent and character.

    Comment by larry J. Hochberg — July 2, 2014 @ 11:58 am

  26. Our sympathy goes out to the entire Karp family and to the communities in which Howard Karp shared his life. The world has lost a gentle and great wise man, soul, and beautifully-inspiring musician.

    His spirit shall live on with his music, the impact of his teaching and artistry on so many people’s lives and thoughts, and his model of balancing life, work, and family. Sending our deepest condolences.

    Comment by Christine Mata Eckel & Scott Eckel — July 2, 2014 @ 11:00 am

  27. I remember the Karps every Labor Day and how many Labor Day concerts I enjoyed! Condolences to Parry, Katrin and the family.

    Comment by Marcia Bean — July 2, 2014 @ 7:21 am

  28. My condolences to the entire family. Mr Karp was so very generous in his teaching, and we are fortunate that he taught so many. I continue to learn from him many years after lessons – words of his pop into my head as I study music I associate with him, or a bit of advice finally sinks in or makes sense, or I compare a performance to his with the Karp version always being my favourite.

    Comment by Beth Ylvisaker — July 2, 2014 @ 4:23 am

  29. This is heartbreaking…. I am deeply grateful to have him help me grow in many respects. He inspired me both in music and life. He encouraged me to explore the world, that has broadened my view of life and deepened my passion for music. My Madison years with him were one of the most memorable experiences in the USA. I will always remember him, my beloved wonderful teacher.

    Comment by Shih-Chen Tseng — July 2, 2014 @ 4:17 am

  30. Besides being an outstanding human being, he was an
    incredible brother and I shall miss him dearly.

    Myrna Karp Soled

    Comment by Myrna Soled — July 1, 2014 @ 11:39 pm

  31. Ginny,
    Thank you for the kindness of your message to all of us who admired Professor Howard Karp and will miss his warm gentleness at Capitol Lakes.

    Comment by aloew1@charter.net — July 1, 2014 @ 11:06 pm

  32. He gave so generously in everything, his love for his family, his dedication to his students and colleagues, his passion for learning, his commitment to lyricism and musicality. If only such a great man could have been with us longer. He was truly beloved by all.

    Comment by Christine Schwab — July 1, 2014 @ 10:32 pm

  33. Mr. Karp was wonderful and warm teacher all the time when I had studied with him at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I will miss him and his playing so much. I love you Mr. Karp.

    Comment by nohee kwak — July 1, 2014 @ 10:24 pm

  34. Frances, Parry, and Chris – My sincere sympathies. I remember Howard very well from the great times I spent at your house back in the 1970s. A major loss for the community. All my best, Laurie

    Comment by Laurie Edelman — July 1, 2014 @ 10:10 pm

  35. Howard and Frances played together for the University of Wisconsin Retirement Association. We knew it to be the most remarkable gift.

    Comment by Jane Maher — July 1, 2014 @ 9:57 pm

  36. Condolences to Frances, Parry and Chris and their families. Memories of your father live on in all of us. .

    Comment by Gay Kohl — July 1, 2014 @ 9:51 pm

  37. It breaks my heart to hear that such great person and true musician passed away. He taught me how to love music and life and was a wonderful role model for his students. My time in Madisin under his tutelage was the most glorious days with full of hope and improvement thanks to him. The words are too incapable to describe how much impact he had on people’s life and I owe him greatly for who I am today. His legacy will continue through his students and he will be remembered forever. With great admiration and love, Seung Hye Lee

    Comment by Seung Hye Lee — July 1, 2014 @ 9:36 pm

  38. Condolences to the Karp family. We deeply feel your loss with you. An inspirational man, fine musician and friend, and great gym partner, too.

    Comment by Jim Latimer — July 1, 2014 @ 8:23 pm

  39. Howard has given so much to all of us! His incredible gift to the world as a brilliant musician, great teacher and wonderful friend will always live on! Our heartfelt condolences to the Karp family.

    Comment by Klara and Michael — July 1, 2014 @ 7:56 pm

  40. Twenty years ago, I was very fortunate to prepare concert piano for Mr. Karp when he was invited to perform and teach at Shenyang International Festival in China. A few years later,Mr. Karp recommend me to come to Madison, I have the honor to know more about him and his family.

    His Music,his kindness and his generosity will be missed..

    Comment by Baoli Liu — July 1, 2014 @ 7:34 pm

  41. Howard was an inspiring teacher and a superb pianist. He taught me everything I needed to become a successful musician. He was demanding, sensitive and creative in his teaching and his performing. My condolences to Frances, Parry, Christopher and the entire Karp family. Alberto Rafols

    Comment by Alberto Rafols — July 1, 2014 @ 7:19 pm

  42. Madison has lost a giant in our musical community. Howard Karp was much more than a brilliant pianist and musician. He was an inspiring teacher, a wonderful colleague and role model, and a compassionate, loving man. I’ll always remember his love for the Chicago Cubs and his incredible memory. In fact he knew the batting averages of all the players who played on the ’46 Cubs team, the last team to make it to the World Series. His sense of humor was infectious, his love of life and his love of family were of fundamental importance. Thank you, Howard, for all you have given us. We will miss you.

    Comment by Marc Fink — July 1, 2014 @ 6:39 pm

  43. I am so sorry to hear this very sad news! My sincere condolences to Frances, Perry and Christopher and their families. Howard was my colleague at Illinois, and then I taught for him one summer at Wisconsin. I thought the world of this humble man, outstanding teacher and consummate pianist! He was able to coax the most beautiful sounds out of the instrument. I still can hear the amazingly emotional sounds of the final movement of the Schumann C Major Fantasy and the velvety sounds of the Schubert G Major Sonata. A wonderful man who leaves a powerful legacy. He will be missed.

    Comment by Gail Berenson — July 1, 2014 @ 6:38 pm

  44. I am profoundly saddened by this news. I have been inspired by Howard and his family for the past many years. Howard was the consummate artist–he was a great artist. He was a gentleman–a wonderful gentleman. He was our beloved friend. I will miss him deeply, deeply, deeply. I extend our condolences to Francis and Parry and the rest of his family.

    Comment by Peter Warren — July 1, 2014 @ 6:14 pm

  45. The highest nobility and genuine Love, expressed in sublime musicianship and pianism, and in the inspiring example of a beautifully lived life.

    Comment by George Fee — July 1, 2014 @ 4:04 pm

  46. My very first lesson with Howard, (accustomed to a previous teacher who stressed massive amounts of repertoire) I brought the entire Mozart K311, first movement of Brahms’ 1st sonata, and a few Scriabin preludes. We spent the entire lesson working on the exposition of the Mozart first movement! THAT was something I’ve always remembered, and has been an example for scrutiny, honesty and searching for revelation I most associate with Howard.

    Comment by Dr Marc Heeg — July 1, 2014 @ 3:38 pm

  47. I an very sorry to hear the sad news about Howard. We shared some musical stages a number of times and I always enjoyed his music.
    Glenn Bowen
    Professor of Music Emeritus
    University of Wisconsin-Madison 1961-1992

    Comment by Wini — July 1, 2014 @ 2:55 pm

  48. Generous, inspired, and inspiring teacher, generous, inspired and inspiring musician, generous, inspired and inspiring human being. So sorry to have lost him, so grateful to have had him.

    Ira Goodkin

    Comment by Ira Goodkin — July 1, 2014 @ 2:34 pm

  49. I’ll always remember how warm he was to me when I approached him in the lobby of the Kennedy Center in D.C. in the summer of 1980 to introduce myself and say hello. I was homesick for a Madison face and he was most cordial. He mentioned it to me when we met again in Madison. How great it was that he brought his performance and teaching skills to our community and established a tradition of family performance. Long Live Labor Day concerts and the memory of Howard Karp.

    Comment by Ron McCrea — July 1, 2014 @ 2:03 pm

  50. He was most generous with his time, his wisdom, his understanding of music. We were all the better for knowing him. To a life lived beautifully, with a twinkle in his eye…

    Comment by Jamie Schmidt — July 1, 2014 @ 12:49 pm

  51. I am very sorry to hear about Howard. We shared the musical stage many times, always happily.
    Glenn Bowen
    Professor Emeritus of Music
    University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1961-1992

    Comment by Wini — July 1, 2014 @ 11:57 am

  52. I’m so sorry to hear this sad news. Howard Karp was a wonderful, dedicated teacher and a brilliant pianist. Madison won’t be the same without him.

    Comment by Sandy Tabachnick — July 1, 2014 @ 11:24 am

  53. Our deepest sympathy to the Karp family. Glenn played many times with Howard and it was always a memorable experience,

    Comment by Wini — July 1, 2014 @ 11:07 am

  54. My heart goes out to the Karp family. Howard, a great musical artist, mentor, and friend, inspired us with his generous spirit and artistry, which will live on, in his family and great legacy of students. He was one of a kind and I will miss him beyond measure.

    Comment by Linda Bartley — July 1, 2014 @ 10:55 am

  55. My heartfelt condolences go out to the Karp family! He was a great teacher and pianist and I will miss him.

    Comment by Bethel Balge — July 1, 2014 @ 10:51 am

  56. Our sympathies to the Karp family. Mr. Karp was kind, generous and elegant as a musician and as a human being. We remember him with great respect.

    Comment by The Flums — July 1, 2014 @ 10:44 am

  57. A wonderfully kind man and a brilliant musician! He will be missed by all who knew him and those who were touched by his inspiring artistry.

    Comment by Tony Di Sanza — July 1, 2014 @ 10:39 am

  58. A sad day for the musical community. Of course I’ll never forget hearing him perform, but I’ll treasure the lessons with him. A bad lesson (meaning I was under-prepared) would last about an hour-and-a-half, as he loved helping students and would just keep teaching, and a GOOD lesson would sometimes be 2 to two-and-a-half hours. We’d work on color and shading and he would talk about technique, practice methodology, people he heard perform, and Switzerland, and Colorado — and always, ALWAYS, at the end when I thanked him for the lesson, he would lightly shake his wrist, crinkle his eyes a bit, and say almost under his breath: “Pleasure….” I always left the lesson bettered. Thank you, Mr. Karp — the pleasure was mine.

    Comment by Jess Salek — July 1, 2014 @ 10:24 am

  59. Our heartfelt condolences to the Karp family. Sending much love.

    Comment by Wynne and David Rife — July 1, 2014 @ 10:13 am

  60. We were truly blessed to know this wonderful human being, effortless friend, remarkable intellect, and consummate musician. We send our love and condolences to his dear family.

    Douglas and Karen Hill

    Comment by Douglas Hill — July 1, 2014 @ 9:34 am

  61. I will always be grateful that I was privileged to listen to Howard Karp’s performances, and those of his family and students, for nearly forty years. What a gift to Madison and beyond! My condolences to his family.

    Comment by Anna Shen — July 1, 2014 @ 9:34 am

  62. A wonderful artist and a lovely, good man. He will be missed. Condolences to his family.

    Comment by Marius — July 1, 2014 @ 8:48 am

  63. This is a tremendous loss. It’s hard to imagine September without him, or any time for that matter. So sorry. Condolences to the family.

    Comment by Ronnie — July 1, 2014 @ 8:33 am

  64. My condolences for the Karp family. I remember him from attending the UW School of Music. I never worked with him, but he had an aura of greatness and kindness about him. He will be missed.

    Comment by divadiane1 — July 1, 2014 @ 8:29 am

  65. My condolences to his family, and all his many friends. The finest accompanist to ever grace the halls and stages of UW SOM, and a wonderful example of what it is to be human.

    Comment by Noah Miller — July 1, 2014 @ 8:29 am

  66. I was fortunate to sing in studio for students of Prof. Karp, as he taught them the art of accompanying. I learned as much as they did -maybe more – about the music we were working on. I feel honored to have known him. Rest in peace.

    Comment by KO — July 1, 2014 @ 7:53 am

  67. Frances, Parry, Christopher, Katrin, and all — your loss, and ours, is inestimable. My thoughts and prayers are with you, and my love. Janet Jensen

    Comment by Janet Jensen — July 1, 2014 @ 7:53 am

    • Oh, I just can’t tell you how sad this is for me. I feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity to study with him in my Masters program back in the late 70’s. He was always interested in everybody and everything, and was always passionate about everything Music, always coming up with an interesting anecdote or story or bit of history…I don’t think he ever forgot a thing he learned, yet there was always room for more in that marvelous mind of his. I learned so much from him, and consider him to be one of the greatest influences and inspirations in my life.

      My heart goes out to Frances and my friend Parry, and all their family…what a tragic loss…

      Comment by Paul Jarvis — July 1, 2014 @ 10:13 pm

  68. It’s hard to imagine a world without him, he has been with us so long and given us so much.

    Comment by Susan Fiore — July 1, 2014 @ 7:52 am

  69. Very sad news. I listened to his Liszt sonata last night after I heard the news. No one else ever came close to his interpretation. I feel so fortunate to have studied with him and to haved moved to Madison two years ago and be able to reconnect with the Karp family. He will be missed.

    Comment by Michael Keller — July 1, 2014 @ 7:33 am

    • Howard was an inspiring teacher and a superb pianist. He taught me everything I needed to become a successful musician. He was demanding, sensitive, and creative in his teaching and his performing. My condolences to Frances, Parry, Christopher and the entire Karp family. Alberto Rafols

      Comment by Alberto Rafols — July 1, 2014 @ 7:15 pm

  70. He was everyone’s role model, everyone’s favorite, and everyone’s most beloved. He always will be.

    Comment by Widmung — July 1, 2014 @ 4:08 am

  71. My sympathy to the Karp family. He was a brilliant pianist.

    Comment by Genie Ogden — July 1, 2014 @ 1:30 am


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