One of the founders of the Russia Piano School who contributed a great deal to the Russian style of teaching piano. He was named People's Artist of the USSR in 1946.
He was a pupil at the Moscow Conservatory where he was taught by Sergei Taneyev and Vassily Safonoff.
His numerous recordings made him a world-famous pianist.
His family moved to Moscow in 1883 where he began studying piano and composition in earnest.
He was admired by Sergei Rachmaninoff, whose Second Suite, Op. 17, was dedicated to him.