Peter Takács

  • Professor of Piano

Areas of Study


  • BM, Northwestern University, 1968
  • MM, University Illinois Urbana, 1969
  • Doctoral studies, Peabody Conservatory
  • Study with Howard Karp and Leon Fleisher
  • Tanglewood Piano Fellowship, 1976
  • Conductors Seminar, 1989


Hailed by the New York Times as “a marvelous pianist,” Peter Takács has performed widely, receiving critical and audience acclaim for his penetrating and communicative musical interpretations. Takács was born in Bucharest, Romania, and started his musical studies before his fourth birthday. After his debut recital at age 7, he was a frequent recitalist in his native city until his parents’ request for immigration to the West, at which point all his studies and performances were banned. He continued studying clandestinely with his piano teacher until his family was finally allowed to immigrate to France, where, at age 14, he was admitted to the Conservatoire de Paris.

Upon Takács’ arrival in the United States, his outstanding musical talents continued to be recognized with full scholarships to Northwestern University and the University of Illinois, and a three-year fellowship for doctoral studies at the Peabody Conservatory, where he completed his artistic training with renowned pianist Leon Fleisher.

Takács has performed as guest soloist with major orchestras in the U.S. and abroad, as well as at important summer festivals such as Tanglewood, Music Mountain, Chautauqua Institution, ARIA International, Schlern Music Festival in the Italian Alps, Tel Hai International Master Classes in Israel, and Sweden’s Helsingborg Festival. Since 2008, he has been a member of the faculty at the Montecito Summer Music Festival in Santa Barbara, California. He has performed and recorded the cycle of 32 Beethoven piano sonatas, which were released on the Cambria label to critical acclaim in 2011.

Takács’ success as a teacher is attested to by the accomplishments of his students, who have won top prizes in competitions in the United States, Canada, Europe, and South Africa. They have been accepted at major graduate schools such as the Curtis Institute, Juilliard School, and Peabody Conservatory, among many others. Takács has given master classes in the U.S., Europe, and Asia, and has been a jury member at prestigious national and international competitions such as the San Antonio International Keyboard Competition, the Canadian National Competition, the Cleveland International Piano Competition, and the Hilton Head International Piano Competition. He has taught piano at Oberlin since 1976.

Takács has received numerous prizes and awards for his performances, including first prize in the William Kapell International Competition, the C.D. Jackson Award for Excellence in Chamber Music at the Tanglewood Music Center, and a solo recitalist grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. His performances have been hailed by audiences and the press for their penetrating intellectual insight as well as for their emotional urgency and communicativeness.

Spring 2024

Principal Private Study - Piano — PVST 001
Secondary Private Study (Piano) — PVST 051
Performance Ensembles (Artist Diploma) — APST 600
Performance Project (Artist Diploma) — APST 601
Chamber Music — APST 800
Contemporary Chamber Music — APST 805
Piano Ensemble — APST 810

Fall 2024

Principal Private Study - Piano — PVST 001


Faculty Collaborators Takács and Bernhardsson Release Schubert Sonatas Recording

April 21, 2023

Schubert Violin Sonatas album cover artPiano professor Peter Takács and violin professor Sibbi Bernhardsson have released a recording, Schubert: Three Sonatas for Piano and Violin, Op. 137, on the Leaf Music label—their first collaboration together. Recorded in the May 2020 in Oberlin Conservatory's Clonick Hall, these sonatas are some of Schubert’s most lively yet least-known compositions. This recording is a digital-only release and available online at Leaf Music, Apple Music, and in a lossless audio format on TIDAL Music.

Peter Takács Wins Album of the Year 2022 in Solo Instrumentalist

January 4, 2023

Professor Peter Takács's 11-CD set of the complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas was voted Album of the Year 2022 in the Solo Instrumentalist category by subscribers to the high-resolution streaming platform NativeDSD.

Gramophone Reviews Beethoven Complete Music for Piano and Cello

September 16, 2022

In the current issue of The Gramophone, Donald Rosenberg reviews the recent release of BEETHOVEN Complete Music for Piano and Cello with Professor of Piano Peter Takács, piano, and Robert DeMaine, cello.

Peter Takács New Recordings Released

August 9, 2022

Professor of Piano Peter Takács has released "The Complete Music for Piano and Cello" with cellist Robert DeMaine on Leaf Music. His "Complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas" is being released in high definition by the Dutch distributor nativeDSD. A new label, PeterTakácsMusic, has been created to present new recordings on all available streaming platforms, including Spotify, TIDAL, and Apple Music. The initial release is Franz Schubert's Four Impromptus, Op. 90.

Visit for more information.

Peter Takács Performs Sold-Out Carnegie Hall Concert

November 5, 2015

Professor of Piano Peter Takács played the first of three programs in his "Beethoven Experience" series at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall on October 18. Of the sold-out performance, Frank Daykin of New York Concert Review said "Beethoven would have been proud.”

For more on the performance, see the New York Concert Review.


Peter Takács—A Half-Century Celebrated

May 4, 2024

This spring marks the official conclusion of Takács’ tenure, after an incredible 48 years of teaching. Many of his former students from around the world are set to convene for a celebratory concert in Warner Concert Hall on May 12

Peter Takács Begins Three Concert Series of Beethoven’s Complete Violin Sonatas

December 9, 2022

Oberlin piano professor and avowed Beethoven devotee Peter Takács will be bringing the composer’s 10 violin sonatas to Kulas Recital Hall over the course of three concerts this academic year. The first edition, on Sunday, December 11, features three violinists on Oberlin’s faculty—Sibbi Bernhardsson and Verona Quartet violinists Jonathan Ong and Dorothy Ro—and guest artist Daniel Stepner.