John Pennink, 78, a retired concert pianist, died of a heart attack Aug. 31 at his home in Huntingdon Valley.

Mr. Pennink survived World War II as a teenager hiding with his family in Indonesia. Mr. Pennink, who studied music in The Hague and Paris, ceased performing 20 years ago.

His last solo concert was in the late 1970s at the University of Pennsylvania, his son Mark said, though "in the mid-'80s there were some benefit concerts . . . on the property at his house."

Mr. Pennink's father was a Dutch colonial official who died in a concentration camp after the Japanese invaded the Dutch East Indies, now Indonesia. The family survived.

"We were hidden with a Chinese family," Mr. Pennink's brother Menno recalled. For fear of discovery, "I could not go out to play in the streets."

Mr. Pennink's mother stirred his interest in music at an upright piano during their confinement.

After the war, the Penninks returned to Amsterdam, where Mr. Pennink began serious musical studies at 16.

"His star was rising very quickly," said Menno Pennink, a North Carolina neurosurgeon. "When he was 18, he gave a concert in Einhoven," and the ovation at the end went on "for five minutes. The people were wild."

In 1950, while studying with Willem Andriessen, director of the Amsterdam Conservatory, Mr. Pennink received his Dutch state diploma of music.

And in 1951, he won a prize at the Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud International Piano Competition in Paris and began studying at Long's school there.

Mr. Pennink immigrated to the States in the mid-1950s, his brother said, and, through American friends he had met in the Netherlands, continued his studies at the Curtis Institute.

Mr. Pennink was a soloist at eight concerts with the Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Eugene Ormandy.

Besides his brother and son, Mr. Pennink is survived by his wife of 52 years, Eshowe; daughters Aimee and Maia; eight grandchildren; and a sister.

Services were held at his home Sept. 2. Burial was in Bryn Athyn Cemetery.

Contact staff writer Walter F. Naedele at 215-854-5607 or wnaedele@phillynews.com.