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Shostakovitch - Violin Concerto No 1 Op 77

with Maxim Vengerov

In this online violin masterclass, the great Maxim Vengerov focuses on the Passacaglia, 3rd movement of Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No 1 in A Minor, Op 77

Instrument Violin

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Course Length
2 lessons · 48m 08s

Maxim Vengerov is recognised as one of the world's most exciting and brilliant violinists. His prodigious talent emerged when he was very young. He gave his first recital at the age of five and went on to win First Prize in the Junior Wieniawski Competition when he was ten years old, confirming his promise as a violinist of rare talent. Still in his mid-thirties he is now acknowledged throughout the world as one of the great musicians of our time.

He is also an outstanding teacher and is Professor of Violin at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Perceptive, entertaining and always sensitive to the individual personality and ability of his pupils, he has an extraordinary ability to convey his insights into the music and inspire his students.

The Passacaglia, third movement of Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No. 1 in A Minor, Op. 77, is the central component of this masterclass. Composed in 1948 and first performed in public in 1955, it is dedicated to the composer's friend David Oïstrakh, a virtuoso he admires; it is the reason why the work is so technical. Oïstrakh took time to become familiar with this very unique work, but then soon became its most fervent defender. Thanks to him, seven years after being composed, the work was created and acclaimed. Indeed, the concerto distinguishes itself by its Passacaglia, notable for its juxtaposition of Stalin's theme from the Seventh Symphony and Beethoven's Fifth Symphony.

In partnership with The Masterclass Media Foundation Archives, which provides a valuable educational resource in order to perpetuate musical passion and knowledge from one generation to another. [MMF019]

Lesson Plan

Show All 2 Lessons

Maxim Vengerov

Maxim Vengerov is recognised as one of the world’s most exciting violinists. Vengerov gave his first recital at the age of five and, after studying with Galina Tourchaninova and Professor Zakhar Bron, he went on to win the First Prize in the Junior Wieniawski Competition when he was ten years old. In 1990, aged fifteen, he won the Carl Flesch International Violin Competition, confirming his reputation as a musician of the very highest order.

In May 2000, following a ten-year recording contract with Teldec Classics, Maxim Vengerov signed an exclusive contract with EMI Classics. Vengerov’s awards and prizes have included Gramophone Young Artist of the Year, and Ritmo (Spain) Artist of the Year in 1994; Gramophone Record of the Year, Grammy Award nominations for Classical Album of the Year and Best Instrumental Soloist with Orchestra in 1996; the Edison Award for Best Concerto Recording in 1997, Gramophone Artist of the Year in 2002 and Edison Award winner and Grammy Award winner in 2004 for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (with Orchestra) for his recording of the Britten Violin Concerto and the Walton Viola Concerto.

In 1997 Vengerov was the first classical musician to be appointed Envoy for Music by UNICEF. In this role Vengerov has met and performed for disadvantaged children in Uganda, Harlem, Thailand, and those on both sides of the Kosovan ethnic divide. This work has afforded him the opportunity to both inspire children worldwide, and inspire others to raise funds for UNICEF assisted programmes. Another passion of Vengerov’s life is his involvement with young people through giving masterclasses. One such event was recorded by Channel Four Television as part of a documentary on Vengerov called ‘Playing by Heart’ shown at the Cannes Television Festival in 1999. Since June 2005 Vengerov has been Professor of Violin at the Royal Academy of Music, London.

Maxim Vengerov appears by courtesy of EMI Classics.

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