Walter Witt is a classical pianist, composer and educator based in Paris. A lifelong student of the works of Chopin, Walter captivates audiences with his innate musicianship and dynamic presence at the piano. Together with his advocacy for classical music and its educational importance, these talents make him one of the most compelling figures in classical music today.
A native of California, Walter began studying piano at the age of 5 with Mae Gilbert Reese, a student of Nadia Boulanger and the legendary pianist Alfred Cortot in Paris. At age 12, Walter debuted with the Westchester-Marina del Rey symphony (today the Culver City Symphony), performing Mozart’s Piano Concerto in D minor. He was first prize winner in the California Music Teachers Association piano competition, which led to masterclasses with renowned pianist Menachem Pressler, founder of the Beaux Arts Trio.
Following graduation from Yale, Georgetown and an international business career, Walter settled in France with his wife and four children and attended the Rachmaninoff conservatory. He has since re-dedicated himself to teaching, to performing and to writing about music and the piano.
Walter specializes in the “French school,” notably Chopin, Fauré, Debussy and Ravel, and has an abiding passion for Bach, Schubert, Brahms, Gershwin and Rachmaninoff. He performs regularly in public and private settings in France and abroad. In 2018, Walter started a highly acclaimed concert lecture tour on Chopin in the historic “New Athens” quarter in Paris, home to Chopin and other luminaries of the Romantic Movement.
Walter’s memoir, “Lessons From the Piano," reflects upon inspiring life lessons from his teachers, including his father, a prominent surgeon and gifted pianist and organist, as well as from his own wealth of experience as a pianist, father, teacher and business executive.
It’s a must-read for musicians and non-musicians alike — parents of music students, professionals who work hard to pursue their artistic interests — in short, lovers of all things music and the piano.