Tobias Matthay won the Sterndale Bennett Scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music in 1871. He was appointed a sub-professor at the Academy from 1876, and was a full professor from 1880 to 1925. His made his debut as a pianist in November 1884.

Matthay taught many of Britain’s finest pianists, including Dame Myra Hess, Harriet Cohen, Irene Scharrer, Clifford Curzon, Dame Moura Lympany, York Bowen, Harold Craxton, Vivian Langrish, Eileen Joyce, Irene Scharrer, Nina Milkina and Eunice Norton. In 1905 he opened the Tobias Matthay Piano School while continuing at the Academy. He is the author of many educational works for piano technique.

The collection includes portraits and some small personal items, as well as his Bechstein composing piano and some fingering charts. In addition, the Special Collections within the Library hold a collection of his manuscripts and other items more recently acquired, along with samples of his wooden practice triangles and their accompanying instruction charts.

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