William Lincer's Biography (continuation)

It was not until the 1960s that Lincer became associated with a school of music. From 1960 to 1969, he was a member of the Manhattan School of Music faculty, and then in 1969 was named Professor of Viola and Chamber Music at the Juilliard School of Music. He also served for many years as an adjunct professor for the doctoral program in music at both Queens College in New York and at New York University.

When he was a teenager, Lincer suffered a severe hand injury in an accident and was told that his performing days were at an end. Lincer did not accept this verdict and through constant exercise and the application of knowledge gained from extensive study of physiology, he was able to resume his career. In later years, he was to apply this same knowledge in his development of "an innovative and comprehensive approach to teaching the performing arts." This approach became the subject of a dissertation by one of his students, John Jake Kella, and has since been set forth in several articles. What Lincer developed was a concept of viola pedagogy that helps students achieve both technical command and emotional expression in instrumental performance. His program is centered around the following: breathing and relaxation studies, body-movement and muscle-action studies, and concentration and visualization studies. His goal is to bring students to a synthesis of all these studies so that the technical aspects of performance serve only as a vehicle through which the all-important expressive power of the music is communicated. The success of Lincer's pedagogy can be seen in the number of his students who hold important orchestral, chamber, and teaching positions in this country and abroad.

Lincer made a number of recordings with the Philharmonic and was the editor of numerous viola publications. He also was the recipient of several important awards. In the 1960s he was honored by the New York Herald Tribune as the outstanding performer of his instrument in a ceremony that similarly honored Ralph Kirkpatrick and Nathan Milstein. In 1986 he received the American String Teachers Association's Artist-Teacher Award and in 1993 he was awarded a certificate and medal from the New York Viola Society. In 1996 Lincer was featured as one of this century's outstanding violists in a 3-volume CD entitled The History of the Viola on Record, issued by Pearl Records Ltd. (1995).

On 31 July 1997, at the age of 90, Lincer passed away at St Luke's- Roosevelt Hospital Center, Manhattan. His tireless devotion to teaching has and will continue to influence generations of string players and musicians.

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