Sunday, December 8, 2013

Sergey Krylov

Sergey Krylov is a Russian violinist, teacher, and conductor born (in Moscow) on December 2, 1970.  A bit of trivia about Krylov’s life is that his father was a violin maker (luthier), a rarity in Russia because Russian violin makers are few and far between, for reasons I know nothing about.  For hundreds of years (1550-1950), the overwhelming majority of violins were produced in Europe and nowhere else.  Another bit of trivia is that none other than (cellist) Mstislav Rostropovich was supposed to have declared Krylov to be one of the top five violinists in the world.  You can judge for yourself in this YouTube video – you can hear a pin drop in the immense audience which you can sense is simply spellbound.  Krylov began violin lessons at age 5.  A year later, he played his first public concert.  He entered the Central School either in Moscow or Kiev (a well-known music school for gifted children) at age 10.  His teachers there were Abram Shtern and Sergey Kravschenko.  His first recording came at age 16 on the Melodiya label, the official (government) Russian label at the time, with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra, which resides in Vilnius, city where Jascha Heifetz was born - Krylov would much later (2008) be appointed conductor of this orchestra.  After winning a violin competition in Italy at age 18, he began studying with Salvatore Accardo.  He later won another competition in Cremona, Italy, and still another in Vienna.   By that point, Krylov had begun his concertizing career, spending most of his time in Russia and Europe.  His playing has been described as “hypnotic.”  His articulation is very clean and reminds me of Leonid Kogan’s although Krylov’s sound is much sweeter than Kogan’s.  If you feel so inclined you can hear and see his performance of the Tchaikovsky concerto here.  My favorite recording of this work is Tossy Spivakovsky’s but Krylov’s certainly comes in a close second.  He has also participated in countless chamber music concerts throughout the world with a diverse group of musicians, including Maxim Vengerov, Mischa Maisky, Nobuko Imai, Yefim Bronfman, and Yuri Bashmet.  In 2012, he became part of the music faculty at the University of Music and Art in Lugano, Switzerland.  His recording labels are EMI, Agora, and Melodiya.  He has played the Scotland University Stradivarius of 1734 but I don’t know if he is presently playing that particular violin.  

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