Can Belto

On the art of singing and those who practice it…

Addio Maestro Paul Kiesgen

This is going to be hard…And the tears start to flow.

You are going to have to forgive me, but I am writing through tears. My voice teacher has died.

If you are not a singer, let me just say that you form a bond with your voice teacher that is very special. It is almost a paternal bond and a teacher is as protective of his teachers as a hen of her chicks. That is because that is exactly what we are, we are their chicks and no matter whether just a chorister or a world famous singer we will always be our teacher’s chicks.

I met Paul Kiesgen in 1998, when I was in need of a new voice teacher. My relationship with my former teacher had ended badly, I felt my voice was a wreck and I needed a new start.

That is when this wonderful man came into my life. He took me under his wings and started working with me with a lot of patience and a  good doze of love. During the 2 years that I studied with him I regained my confidence and the ease of my high notes.

What kills me is that he never knew. I never told him how important his help was in my vocal recovery. I owed him everything and I never told him. In my own self-centerdness, in my own selfishness I never took the time to tell him how important he had and was to me.

So you are going to have to forgive me because there is something I need to say, even if he will never be able to read this:


Thank you. Your help, your patience, your advise, your gentleness made a huge difference in my life and I owe you an eternal debt. Thank you, I could not be who I am now had you not taken an interest. Whether I am a success or a failure it is not a reflection on you but a result of my own decisions; the fact still remains that you were like a father figure when I needed one and I will remember that until the day I die.

Thank you maestro. Thank you for your guidance, for accepting me as difficult and opinionated as I was, and as full of myself as someone in their 20’s could be.

Rest in peace Maestro.



April 7, 2011 Posted by | In memoriam | 1 Comment