Respect this mofo.
Topilin studied with Pavel Lutsenko and Neuhaus, and became the latter’s assistant.
When he toured with Oistrakh in Ukraine in the early 1930s, Richter said that Topilin’s playing of Chopin–during a solo part of the concert–overwhelmed him so much that he then took piano playing seriously.
In this mid 1940s this legit mofo was sentenced to TEN YEARS in Kolyma and the notorious Ozerlag gulag. If you haven’t read Shalamov’s Kolyma Tales, you’ve got a great work of literature ahead of you.
After a decade of labour, he went on to teach music in Krasnoyarsk, Kharhov and Kiev.
Respect this mofo’s life.
You can see a short video of him playing with Oistrkah here: