As the wife of one of pianist John Perry's students, I must express my anger and disgust at Michael Fleming's outrageous slur on Perry's character ("Playing It Safe at the Cliburn Competition," June 16).

To accuse Perry or the Fort Worth jury of "favoritism" shows a blatant lack of knowledge for the methods and difficulties in chosing a field of competitors and is a smear on the good name of Van Cliburn and the Van Cliburn Competition.

Perry was not the only jurist selecting the pianists for the competition. If six of the 36 competitors were his students (six of 15 Americans), then that says more for Perry's reputation as a fine teacher than does it accuse the jurists of favoritism.


Van Nuys

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