Van Cliburn was a huge inspiration to me when I was a young teenager. His recordings inspired me beyond belief. I couldn’t imagine being able to play the piano the way he did. As a result I would practice and practice, listen to the same recording over and over again (We only had the one: the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1 for which he won the Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition at the height of the Cold War.) and then even practice more.
- Pianist Van Cliburn dies aged 78 (bbc.co.uk)