Zuzana Ruzickova

Czech harpsichordist Zuzana Růžičková was born on 14 January 1927 in Plzeň, where, aged nine, she studied piano with Marie Provaníková. She endured a horrific childhood during World War II, in Plzeň, Theresienstadt, Auschwitz, Hamburg and Bergen-Belsen.

After the war, she studied piano with Bohdan Gsölhofer, then, at Prague's Academy of Performing Arts, with Albín Šíma, František Rauch and Oldřich Kredba, where she specialised in the interpretation of early music.

After winning the 1956 International Music Competition in Munich, she continued to study harpsichord in Paris, and began performing regularly throughout Europe, and made many visits to Japan.

With Václav Neumann she co-founded the Prague Chamber Soloists, and worked as a duo with Josef Suk. She also collaborated with Serge Baudo, Herbert Blomstedt, Aurèle Nicolet, Pierre Fournier, Neville Marriner, Libor Pešek, Jean-Pierre Rampal, Helmuth Rilling, Paul Sacher and János Starker.

She made a large number of recordings on the Supraphon and Erato labels, and is best known for her interpretations of J S Bach.

She also taught at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, and also in Bratislava, Budapest, Krakow, Riga, Stuttgart, Tokyo and Zurich.

Zuzana Růžičková continued to perform in public until 2004, and she died in  hospital in Prague on 27 September 2017, aged ninety.