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Sedmara Zakarian Rutstein was born and raised in the Soviet Union. A child prodigy, she began her piano studies at the age of five and gave her first public recital the next year, including works of Mozart and Beethoven.

After World War II, she was accepted at Leningradís Special Music School for Gifted Children. She continued her undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate studies at the Leningrad Conservatoire with the distinguished Professor Nadezhda Golubovskaya, a classmate and friend of Sergei Prokofiev.

After winning an All-Union Competition in Moscow, she became a well-known recitalist and soloist with top Soviet orchestras and performed often on radio and television. She also was a faculty member of the Leningrad Conservatoire. Presently, she is a tenured professor at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music.

Sedmara Zakarian Rutstein continues her performing career displaying a wide range of musical styles. Excerpts from her records released on Musical Heritage Society and Orion are often heard on classical music radio stations across the nation.