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Pianist Fred Hersch Celebrates Milestones At New England Conservatory08:40
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Fred Hersch's latest album is "Fred Hersch Solo." (Courtesy Fred Hersch)
Fred Hersch's latest album is "Fred Hersch Solo." (Courtesy Fred Hersch)
This article is more than 3 years old.

Jazz pianist Fred Hersch has a new album out, "Fred Hersch Solo." He's a GRAMMY Award-nominated pianist and composer with deep roots in Boston. 40 years ago, he came to study at the New England Conservatory, and now he's back to perform a solo recital Thursday that celebrates the 40th anniversary of his arrival at NEC — and his 60th birthday.

Reaching the age of 60 is a significant milestone in anyone's life, but in Fred Hersch's case, it seems close to miraculous. He was diagnosed with HIV in 1986 and, seven years ago, he fell gravely ill and went into a two-month coma.

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Fred Hersch, GRAMMY Award-nominated pianist and composer.

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The Boston Globe: Jazz Pianist Fred Hersch Conveys Medical Peril

  • "In June of 2008, Fred Hersch, a renowned jazz pianist and composer and a New England Conservatory faculty member, had just come off a demanding tour, and wasn’t feeling well."

The New York Times: Giant Steps: The Survival Of A Great Jazz Pianist

  • "Influential artists sometimes click in the public consciousness only after the rise of the movements they have influenced. A school of creative work emerges — seemingly spontaneously, its origins obscure at first."

This segment aired on October 29, 2015.

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