Sunday, May 15, 2011

Silvia Marcovici

Silvia Marcovici is a Romanian violinist and teacher born (in Bacau) on January 30, 1952 (Itzhak Perlman was 7 years old.)  She is practically the only artist in the western world without a website.  Marcovici began her studies at an early age in Bacau.  Her formal studies took place at the Conservatory in Bucharest.  Stefan Gheorghiu, a pupil of Oistrakh, was one of her teachers.  At 13, Marcovici made several public appearances and played on Romanian Television.  She made her professional debut at the age of 16 at The Hague.  At age 17, she took second prize in the Jacques Thibaud Competition in Paris – nobody took first prize.  (Something similar happened to Eugene Fodor at the Tchaikovsky Competition in 1974.)  Marcovici later said that she was so nervous before this competition that someone had to push her on stage to perform.  The following year, she took first prize in the George Enesco Competition in Bucharest.  Marcovici first toured the U.S. at age 20.  She played the Glazunov Concerto with the London Symphony (with Leopold Stokowski) at the Royal Albert Hall in 1972. (Please see comments below.) That was Stokowski’s final appearance with the London Symphony.  It has been frequently remarked that her stage presence is striking.  Her first appearance with the New York Philharmonic was on January 24, 1980.  She was (almost) 28 years old - the third concerto of Saint Saens was the work she played.  Her second (and most recent) appearance with the Philharmonic was on September 28, 2001,  Of the Big Five American orchestras (New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Chicago, and Boston) the only one she has never soloed with is the Boston Symphony.  She has recorded under the Decca, BIS, Doremi, and Aurophon labels.  Her discography includes the concertos of Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Bruch, Sibelius, and Nielsen.  One of her specialties is the second concerto of Bartok.  Marcovici has toured Japan, Europe, South America, the U.S., and the Middle East, and played with some of the world’s leading conductors.  She also frequently participates in chamber music concerts.  Her playing has been described (by the Daily Telegraph, London, UK) as “beautiful, perfect, with genuine eloquence and feeling.”  There are many great videos of her playing on the internet, including this one on YouTube.  Marcovici currently teaches at the University for Music and Art in Graz (Austria) and has also taught at the Conservatory in Lausanne, Switzerland.  Her views on the career of an artist are stated thus: “The secret of a career lies in the knowledge of how to manage it - adapt your repertoire to your talent, choose carefully where, when and with whom you play.  Know your strengths and your weaknesses.  And then, just pray to the gods that luck may smile on you." 


  1. Silvia's performance of the Glazunov concerto, under Leopold Stokowski, was at a concert celebrating the 60th anniversary of his first recoding. It took place in London's ROYAL FESTIVAL HALL, not in the Royal Albert Hall. I know: I was there.

    1. Thank you so much for your comment and clarification. It is nice to get actual first hand accounts. Best wishes.