Lithuania in the News
18th January 2009
International Jascha Heifetz Violin Competition in Vilnius Honours World Famous Lithuanian Born Violinist Jascha Heifetz
Jascha Heifetz.
The 3rd International Jascha Heifetz Violin Competition was held in Vilnius, Lithuania, January 10-14, 2009, and was part of the “Culture Live” festivities of Vilnius - 2009 Cultural Capital of Europe.
Jascha Heifetz (1901 – 1987) was the world’s most famous violinist of the 20th century. He was born in Vilnius and there as a child prodigy he played in his first concerts. He lived in America from 1917. The first International Jascha Heifetz Violin Competition was instigated in Vilnius in 2001 on the 100th anniversary of Heifetz’s birth. It is held every four years and this year it attracted 52 competitors from 22 countries. After the initial selection, in the first round of the competition there were 37 violinists from 16 countries. In the final round on January 14, six competitors played with the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Juozas Domarkas, in the Philharmonia Hall in which Jascha Heiftez himself had performed. The first prize went to Sergey Malov (Russia), second prizes went to Justina Auškelytė (Lithuania) and Michail Pochekin (Russia), third prizes to Sunny Tae (South Korea) and Evgeny Sviridov (Russia), with a diploma to Ieva Paukštytė (Lithuania).
Justina Auškelytė playing with the Lithuanian National Symphony
Orchestra in the final round of the Jascha Heifetz competition.
Photo courtesy
The competition international jury chairman was Gidon Kremer, himself a world famous violinist of this century. He was also the jury chairman for the two earlier competitions. The Latvian-born Kremer is the founder and director of the Kremerata Baltica, a chamber orchestra composed of young talented performers from the Baltic Sates of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. Kremerata Baltica every year performs in about 60 concerts throughout Europe and beyond. This year on January 13, after the completion of the Heifetz competition second round, they gave a concert in Vilnius as part of the “Hommage à Heifetz” round of festivities. They will give a series of concerts in Australia in February 2009 (Please see Announcements on this website).

More information: 09&16/01/09, 09/01/09