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Rildia Bee O’Bryan Cliburn

January 1, 2019

1987 – Fort Worth, Texas

Rildia Bee O’Bryan Cliburn was born in McGregor, Texas. After her graduation from Richmond High School in Richmond, Texas, where she was valedictorian, she studied piano with Frederick Shailer Evans at the Cincinnati Conservatory. She later studied extensively in New York at the New York Institute of Musical Art (later The Julliard School) with Arthur Friedheim. She was married to Harvey Lavan Cliburn. They had one son, concert pianist Van Cliburn. She began to teach Van the piano when he was three and remained his only teacher until he graduated from high school and went to New York to study at The Julliard School. Mrs. Cliburn was long associated with and committed to education in academics and in the arts. Her distinguished career as a concert pianist attracted and greatly influenced a wide following of enthusiastic and devoted students. The University of Cincinnati and Baylor University presented her with Distinguished Alumna awards and the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra honored Mrs. Cliburn by dedicating its 1986-1987 season to her. She was an inspiration to many young musicians and her annual scholarships at the University of Cincinnati, Baylor University and The Julliard School have enabled many deserving young pianists to further their musical careers. The 25th Anniversary Distinguished Women’s program in New York was dedicated to her memory. (Deceased 1994)