David Allen Wehr holds the Jack W. Geltz Distinguished Piano Chair at the Mary Pappert School of Music. His international career was launched when he won the Gold Medal at the 1987 Santander International Piano Competition in Spain. The resulting tours have taken him to over 30 countries in Europe, North and South America, and the Far East, including performances in the world musical capitals of New York, London, Paris, Vienna, Washington, Madrid, and Buenos Aires. Over 1,000 concerts include 13 seasons of touring the United States and Canada for Community Concerts as soloist, pianist with the Sartory Trio, and duo-recital partner with violinist Linda Wang and cellist Zuill Bailey. Wehr has been soloist with the London Symphony, National Symphony, Chautauqua Symphony, Houston Symphony, New Zealand Symphony, and all the major Spanish and Latin American orchestras.
Born in Princeton, New Jersey, Wehr grew up in Boise, Idaho, where his parents, graduates of Westminster Choir College, were ministers of music at the Methodist Cathedral of the Rockies. Piano lessons began on his fourth birthday with his mother and continued with his father. Later teachers were Peggy Erwin, Edward Zolas, and Sequeira Costa. Wehr studied at the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Taos School of Music, the Dartington Summer Music School in England, and holds degrees from the University of Kansas. He coached extensively with Leon Fleisher, Jorge Bolet, and Malcolm Frager. Early in his career, Wehr won the 1975 Kosciuszko Chopin Prize in New York City, the 1983 National Federation of Music Clubs Young Artist Award, and Second Prizes in the 1983 Naumburg International Piano Competition at New York's Carnegie Hall, and the 1986 Kapell Competition at the Kennedy Center.
David Allen Wehr has amassed a large and critically acclaimed discography with Connoisseur Society, Inc., with programs by Chopin, Debussy, Rachmaninoff, Mussorgsky, Schumann, Delius, Czerny, Gershwin, Brahms, Griffes, Wagner-Liszt, Dvořák, and Joe Utterback. The complete Beethoven Sonata Cycle has been released in four double-CD albums. His CDs are available through the Mary Pappert School of Music by calling 412.396.6082 and at amazon.com. Since 2007, Wehr has served each summer as Principal Keyboard at the Sunflower Music Festival in Topeka, Kansas and the Buzzards Bay Musicfest in Marion, Massachusetts.
Wehr was first associated with Duquesne from 1991–1994, when the Sartory Trio was chamber ensemble-in-residence, and his current tenure began in 2001, when he was named the first Hillman Distinguished Chair.
Areas of Expertise:
- Classical Piano
- Chamber Music
- Piano Literature
David Allen Wehr's Bluff Series is an extraordinarily popular chamber music series featuring members of the Mary Pappert School of Music faculty, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and other internationally-known artists. Spanning nearly two decades, the series now regularly sells out concerts to a fiercely loyal crowd. Past themes in the series include:
2002–2004: Complete Beethoven Piano Sonata Cycle
2004: Beethoven's Dynamic Duos: Complete Works for Cello and Piano, Complete Sonatas for Violin and Piano, Ninth Symphony for Two Pianos
2005–2008: Brahms on the Bluff: Complete Chamber Music
2008–2010: Musique on the Bluff (French music)
2010: Bicentennials on the Bluff (Chopin and Schumann)
2011–2012: Dvořák at Duquesne
2012–2013: Budapest on the Bluff (Hungarian music)
2013–2015: Beethoven on the Bluff
2015–2016: Schubert/David Stock on the Bluff
2016–2017: Schubert/Copland on the Bluff
2017–2018: Schubert/Debussy on the Bluff
2018–2019: Moscow on the Bluff (Russian music)
For more information or tickets to the current series, please visit duq.edu/BluffSeries