Vadim Monastyrski received his musical education from the Moscow Gnesin Institute under the guidance of Theodor Gutman (pupil of the legendary Henrich Neihaus). He is a Bronze medallist of Liszt — Bartok International Piano Competition in Budapest, Hungary in 1976, and a winner of a Gold medal at the Haendel International Festival in Halle, Germany in 1979.
"His performance of the Sonata in B — Minor by Liszt left us astounded. We were as though hypnotized. This masterpiece is the top of Liszt’s creative work. The canvas of music woven by the pianist seemed to consist of many intermitted picturesque images. His perfect technical skills allowed him to fulfill all his intentions." Jerusalem Post, Jerusalem, Israel.
The extraordinary acclaim for Vadim Monastyrski’s recording of Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies and Transcriptions won him the "Grand Prix du Disque" in 1980 at the International Competition of Recordings in Hungary. He made numerous Radio recordings for Lugano (Swiss-Italian) Radio Station and Jerusalem (Israel) Music Radio Station.
"… understandable, and interesting, without interpreting himself…" Frankfurter Neue Press, Frankfurt, Germany.
A former professor at the St. Petersburg Conservatory (Russia), Vadim Monastyrski is an Honoured Artist of Russian Federation. He served as a member of many juries of national and international competitions, among them: Lissabon International Piano Competition, Hong Kong Piano International Competition, Rostropovich International Piano Competition in Orenburg (as chairman), Bösendorfer and Yamaha USASU International Competition in Arizona, Liszt International Piano Competition in Germany.
Since 1991, Vadim Monastyrski has been a professor at the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance in Israel, and his students are consistently winners of many international competitions. From 2010 to 2013 Prof. Monastyrski was the Head of Piano Department of the Jerusalem Academy of Music.
Monastyrski’s engagements with orchestras include performances with such symphony orchestras as Budapest Philharmonic, Moscow Philharmonic, Leningrad Symphony, Lugano Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, Jerusalem Symphony, Tel-Aviv Philharmonic, Johannesburg National Symphony, Cape Town Symphony Orchestra. He performed under the button of such renowned conductors as Jan Ferencik, Veronika Dudarova, Sergei Provatorov, Dmitri Serov, Dudu Shalon, Jose Serebrier, and Isaac Karabtchevsky.
"The combination of virtuoso accomplishment and an artistic personality of remarkable stature is what places Monastyrski in a class all by himself." Jerusalem Post, Jerusalem, Israel
Vadim Monastyrski is in high demand as a piano teacher that resulted in numerous invitations from international music festivals throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa and North America, among them: Burgos Music Festival (Spain); Les Musi Cimes (France), Summit Music Festival (NY, USA); Masters of Pont Levoy (France); Summer Academy of Music (St. Petersburg, Russia), etc. There he gave very successful performances as soloist and chamber musician and taught great number of international students. The geography of Monastyrski’s concert tours is wide and includes most continents of the globe. He performed on stages in Canada, Germany, Italy, Spain, USA, China and Hong Kong, Japan, South Africa, Russia, Ukraine, Bashkortastan, Hungary.
Efrem Briskin graduated from the St. Petersburg (Leningrad) State Conservatory, where he received his DMA with distinction. After completion of his studies, he became professor of piano at the Petrozavodsk branch of the St. Petersburg Conservatory. His concert calendar included solo and chamber recital tours of the former U.S.S.R. and solo appearances with orchestras as well as television and radio broadcasts throughout Eastern Europe and Russia. After emigrating to the U.S.A. in 1979, Mr. Briskin continued to pursue an active performing career. As a soloist and member of the Emelin Trio he has performed in the U.S.A., Canada, Italy, Germany, France, Belgium, Venezuela, and South Africa.
Mr. Briskin collaborated with such artists as Aaron Rosand, Vladimir Tretyakov, Mikhail Kopelman, Nathaniel Rosen, Albert Markov, Stanley Drucker, Julius Baker, and Oxana Yablonskaya, among others. At present Mr. Briskin serves on the faculties of Manhattan School of Music and the Music Conservatory of Westchester. He is an artistic director of the Summit Music Festival in Tarrytown, N.Y. and the director of the International Academy of Music in St.Petersburg, Russia and Castelnuovo di Garfagnana, Italy.
Manhattan School of Music Associate since 2005.
Mr. Briskin has been a member of the Manhattan School of Music Precollege faculty since 2004.
Anthony Bonamici is an American pianist originally from Livonia, Michigan. Anthony studied piano and music composition at both the Moscow and Saint Petersburg conservatories in Russia under the tutelage of Naum Shtarkman, Elena Shishko, and Boris Tishchenko, the prominent and acclaimed disciple of Dmitry Shostakovich. Later, Anthony continued his studies in New York at the Mannes School of Music under the guidance of renowned American pianist, Richard Goode.
Anthony regularly performs solo recitals and chamber music. He has collaborated with soloists of the Mariinsky Theater and Helikon Opera Theater (Moscow), and with members of the Mariinsky Theater Orchestra, Saint Petersburg Philharmonic, Russian Early Music Ensemble, Barocco Concertato, The Moscow Virtuosi, and Bolshoi Symphony Orchestra. Anthony has given performances at many of Russia’s most prestigious concert halls including the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic, the Mariinsky theater, the Moscow conservatory, and at Carnegie Hall in New York City.
While living in Russia, Anthony taught undergraduate and graduate piano performance and chamber music at the Russian State Pedagogical University named after A. I. Herzen. He was invited to join their faculty after a performance of chamber music at the university with a clarinetist from the Mariinsky theater orchestra. At about the same time, Anthony opened his own business in St. Petersburg: the “Bonamici Clavecins” workshop. For 10 years, his workshop built, sold, restored, and maintained harpsichords and other early keyboard instruments. Bonamici harpsichords are now owned by many professional concert halls and educational institutions throughout Russia, among which are the Mariinsky theater, the Mikhailovsky theater, the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, and the St. Petersburg conservatory. Being fluent in Russian and English, Anthony has aided in the translation of personal letters between Tishchenko and Shostakovich and more recently has translated several musicological essays from Russian into English for publication in Russia.
Grigory Korchmar was born in 1947 in Baltiysk, Kaliningrad region. He received his higher musical education in composition (with prof. V. N. Salmanov) and in piano (with prof. P. A. Serebryakov) at the St. Petersburg State Conservatory.
He has composed more than 160 works in different genres of theatre, symphonic, choir, vocal and instrumental chamber music, as well as works for children and youth, and made numerous transcriptions of other composers’ music for various performing groups. Mr. Korchmar has had recitals in St. Petersburg, Moscow and other important cultural centers of different countries (New York, Boston, Hartford, Berlin, Cologne, Tokyo, Jerusaleum).
The symphony and chamber works of the composer are often performed at significant festivals in Russia (St. Petersburg Music Spring, Stars of the White Nights, Moscow Autumn, Svyatoslav Richter’s December Nights), the USA, Europe (Belgium, Great Britain, Hungary, Germany, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovakia, Finland, France, Switzerland, Georgia, the Ukraine, Estonia) and Asia (Israel, Turkey, the Republic of Korea, Japan). His works have been repeatedly awarded prestigious prizes (the First Prize at the International Competition named after S. S. Prokofiev; the Prize of the St. Petersburg Government).
Grigory Korchmar has been performing for more than forty years. G. Korchmar is Professor of composition in St. Petersburg State Conservatory and Professor of the Department of Music Education at the Herzen State Pedagogical University. He is President of the St. Petersburg Composers’ Union and bears the title of the Honoured Art Worker of the Russian Federation.
Pavel Eliashevich was born in 1969 in St. Petersburg, Russia. He graduated from the St. Petersburg Conservatory where he studied with Vadim Monastyrsky (piano) and Tamara Fidler (chamber ensemble). For several years, he attended the Holland Music Sessions Summer Academy where he received lessons from Eugene Indjic and Pascal Devoyon. Mr. Eliashevich is a prize-winner of various international competitions in Germany and Italy. He is the founder and artistic director of the noted Russian Musica Da Camera Chamber Ensemble (since 1998 – Ensemble of the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Society). He has appeared in recitals with renowned singers, instrumentalists and orchestras in the best halls of St. Petersburg and abroad (Germany, Holland, Italy, Denmark, the USA etc.)
He has made several recordings for various radio stations and CD labels. Pavel Eliashevich was filmed by the NHK-Japan TV for the documentary Culture of St. Petersburg that received the UNESCO Annual Award in New York (2000). Since 1993, Mr. Eliashevich has been Professor of Piano and Chamber Ensemble at the Herzen State Pedagogical University in St. Petersburg. He gives master classes as a guest professor in Denmark (the Royal Academy of Music, Copenhagen), Belgium (the Young Artists Performance Academy), and the USA (Baylor University , Waco, Texas). He has also served as a jury member for international competitions in Russia and Europe. Since 2004, Mr. Eliashevich has participated as a solo Pianist in Stravinsky’s Les Noces in the Mariinsky Theatre (cond. Valery Gergiev). In 2009, he gave one of the first US performances of the original version of Rachmaninoff’s Fourth Piano Concerto.
Galina Sandovskaya graduated from the St. Petersburg Conservatoire (MA and DA) where she studied with Oleg Malov and Eduard Bazanov. Since 1992 she has been teaching at the Piano Department of the same conservatoire. In 1997 she was a prizewinner of the Gartow Stiftung Competition, and the first prize winner at the National Beethoven Competition. Besides a wide classical repertoire, Prof. Sandovskaya specialises in playing contemporary music. She has participated in many contemporary music festivals, such as “From Avant-garde to Today”, “Sound Waves”, “Art Genda” (Copenhagen), “Mozart and Modern” (Switzerland), “Simeon ten Holt” (Holland). She has released a number of CDs – with Beethoven’s “Hammerklavier”, compositions by Ustvolskaya, Korolev, Izosimov, I.Schlein. In South Korea she recorded 12 instructional videos of Beethoven’s sonatas. Prof. Sandovskaya frequently performs in recitals and with orchestras.
Rafael Salinas was born in Valencia in 1971. He studied psychology and music at the University of Valencia. Later, he continued his post-graduate studies in the Saint-Petersburg Conservatory (Russia). There, he became a Doctor in Art Sciences (Ph. D.) and Doctor in Musical Arts (D.M.A) under the direction of Leonid Sintsev and Dr. Leonid Gákkel.
Rafael Salinas has been a member of the European Council for High Ability and advisor of various programs on detection, evaluation, and development of giftedness. Regularly sits on juries for international competitions and gives master-classes and teacher training courses in various European and Asian countries. Also, his students have been awarded in international competitions. Rafael Salinas combines pedagogy, research, and interpretation. Currently, he is a professor of Piano and Musical Performance Studies in Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya (ESMUC-Barcelona) and Valencian International University (VIU).
She was born in Sofia, Bulgaria, and she studied at the National Musical Academy of Sofia with J. and K. Ganev. She completed her studies at the Moscow Conservatory « P. I. Tschaïkovsky », with Professor T. D. Gutman. Her awards at international piano competitions include prizes at Senigalia (Italy - 1979), Vianna da Motta (Portugal - 1983), Maria Callas (Greece - 1985) and more.
Lilia Boyadjieva pursues a brilliant soloist career. Invited by prestigious Festivals (Montpellier, Auvers-sur-Oise, Athens, Dublin, Montevideo, Taipei, Moscow, Varna…) she performs in recitals as a soloist, with orchestras and with chamber music ensembles in various countries. Radio and television organizations in different countries often broadcast her concerts.
Her recording of Barber’s complete piano works has been praised by Fanfare Magazine as : “… probably the most valuable CD solely devoted to Barber’s keyboard music.” In particular, her interpretation of the Barber Sonata (op. 26), “played with an extraordinary combination of power and delicacy, is one of the finest readings on record.”
The American label Artek Recordings has published her CD “Around the Fugue” – a polyphonic journey from Bach until today. A Shostakovich CD (2nd Sonata, 24 Preludes and 3 Fantastic Dances) has been produced by the same label.
The American label Centaur Records published her last CD with the "Goldberg Variations" by J. S. Bach, described by the American Records Guide as a "wonderful performance".
Very appreciated for her teaching abilities, she has taught at the Sofia Musical Academy, in Athens and Paris (CRR, Schola Cantorum, Montrouge Conservatory). She gives numerous master classes in Greece, Norway, Russia, Bulgaria, Taiwan, France and the U.S. and is often invited as jury member by international piano competitions (Scriabin, Maria Callas, Krasnodar, etc.).
Since 2013 Lilia Boyadjieva organises the International Piano Competition under the label "De Bach Au Jazz", in Paris and Athens.
Michael Wladkowski’s enthusiasm and artistic curiosity have led him to explore a repertoire spanning the works of Bach, Beethoven, Chopin and Debussy to works by Alkan and Szymanowski and on to works of contemporary composers such as Thon Tat Thiet, Antoine Tisné and Tolia Nikiprowetzky, who have dedicated major works to him.
This constantly expanding artistic horizon leads Wladkowski beyond the convention of classical performances to connect with audiences. His recitals combined with poetry read by members of the Comedie Française or his lecture recitals highlighting differences and similarities between the great classic works and contemporary works reveals his exploration of blurring genre boundaries.
Wladkowski’s pursuit of new challenges has led him to constantly expanding his horizon. Among his many recordings for Solstice, REM and Peyrole are the piano works of Karol Szymanowski, whose favorite pupil Piotr Perkowski, himself Wladkowski’s teacher, often remarked on the uncanny similarity between Wladkowski’s performance and that of the master.
Just as he has continually widened his artistic horizons, Wladkowski has ignored linguistic and cultural barriers. He studied in the United States, Poland and Austria and speaks fluent English, French, German, Polish, Russian, Hebrew and Italian.
In addition to his solo work, Wladkowski is an avid chamber music performer and has collaborated with many outstanding musicians including Laurent Korcia, Mark Varshawsky and the Kocian Quartet. His performances the world over have been unanimously greeted with enthusiasm as Pierre Petit of “Le Figaro” noted “Wladkowski is remarkable, an authentic musician who posseses an immediate and splendid contact and who is brilliantly communicative”.
Wladkowski’s passion for the younger generation finds an outlet in his piano class at the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris where his students include many prize winners of international piano competitions. He is equally in demand for master classes which find him regularly in all the european countries, Israel, U.S.A, Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan and Russia.
Born in 1978 in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg), Oleg Vainshtein began to study music at the age of 5. From 1993 to 1997, Mr. Vainshtein studied in the St. Petersburg Rimsky-Korsakov College of Music under L. A. Vasilyeva who was a pupil of great Russian pianist Lev Oborin. In 1997 he entered the N. A. Rimsky-Korsakov Saint Petersburg State Conservatory. His professor was Tatyana Zagorovskaya, a prize-winner of international competitions. On completing his postgraduate education, Mr. Vainstein obtained a teaching position in the Piano Department of the conservatory. Now he combines teaching with giving concerts. His students have been awarded a number of prizes in different international competitions. In 2010, he was awarded the Hope of Russia government prize in the Best Teacher nomination.
Oleg Vainshtein is a prize-winner of several international competitions. He has given concerts in France, Germany, Poland, Mexico, Austria and Russia. He has performed as soloist with the Academic Symphoni Orchestra of the St. Petersburg Filarmony (conductor Leo Kremer), the St. Petersburg State Conservatory Orchestra (conductor A. Sladkovskiy), the St. Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra (cond. V. Petrenko, O. Soldatov, N.Kornev), the Orchestra Classica (conductor A. Kantorov), the Far Eastern Symphony Orchestra (conductors V. Titz, I. Derbilov, E. Schloifer) and the Warsaw Conservatory Symphony Orchestra. He has taken part in the productions of the Mariinskiy Theatre as a solo pianist under the direction of V. Gergiev and M. Agrest. Mr. Vainstein devotes a lot of attention to chamber music. He has performed with singers Vasiliy Gerello, Irina Vasilyeva, Timur Abdikeev, Sergey Zykov, Vladimir Alexandrovich, cellists Dmitriy Khrychev and Alexey Vasilyev, the Atrium, Hermitage, and Taneyev Quartets, the Expromt Quintet, pianists Andrey Ivanovich and Stanislav Solovyev. Oleg Vainshtein has participated in the St. Petersburg Music Spring Festival, Dedication to Maestro Festival, the Days of the German Culture Festival and others. He has also served as a juror for various international competitions.
Sergey Uryvaev was born in 1947 in St. Petersburg. He studied in the school attached to the St. Petersburg State Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory at the piano department (under A. Zhukovskaya). Later he graduated from the St. Petersburg State Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory where he studied with professors S. Savshinski, V. Nilsen, P. Serebryakov (piano), and M. Karandashova(chamber ensemble), and of which he is now a professor himself, teaching piano and piano ensemble. He gives regular solo recitals and master classes. He has performed in Russia and abroad with the Academic Symphony Orchestra, the Novosibirsk Symphony Orchestra and others, and with instrumentalists (all instruments except the flute-piccolo and the tuba). Mr. Uryvaev’s main activity is chamber music.
For many years he worked in the well-known Saint Petersburg Trio (S. Uryvaev, M. Safariants, L. Shukaev) which went on tours around Europe and America in the framework of the Eucational Bridge Project between St. Petersburg and Boston. Mr. Uryvaev serves as a jury member for international competitions in Russia. He bears the title of the Honored Artist of Russia, and is a member of the Concert Workers’ Union of the Russian Federation.
Galina Minsker was born in St. Petersburg. She graduated from the St. Petersburg State Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory where she studied under professors V. Razumovskaya (studied with H. Neuhaus) and M. Gambaryan ( studied with K. Igumnov). At present she is a Senior Teacher of the Piano Department at the St. Petersburg State University of Culture and Arts. At the same time, Galina Minsker works as a specialist of professional rehabilitation of pianists suffering from occupational diseases. Being the follower of A. Shmidt-Shklovskaya (a pianist, a teacher, and the author of an original method for treating professional diseases) she is one of the few specialists in this field in Russia.
Organist Luc Ponet, born in Hasselt (Belgium), gives credit for his international reputation above all to his successful performances in many renowned organ festivals, such as in Paris, Warsaw, Tokyo, Mexico, Chicago, Las Pinas (Manilla), and in the Festival of Flanders. He received the Diplôme Superieur, the so-called “Prix d’excellence”, with great distinction (class of Prof. Chris Dubois) at the College of Music “Lemmensinstituut” in Leuven. Later, his artistic development was greatly influenced by further studies (in organ and improvisation) with Prof. Dr. Hans Haselböck at the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna. In 1982, Luc Ponet was appointed Professor for Organ at the Lemmensinstituut in Leuven and in 1996 he was a guest professor of organ at Concordia University in River Forest (Chicago, Ill.).
In 1988, he became Organist-Titular of the monumental Le Picard-organ in the Basilica in Tongeren (Belgium). In 1999 he became the “organist in residence” of Castel Alden Biesen, the European cultural centre of the Flemish Community in Rijkhoven-Bilzen (Belgium), where he plays on a fantastic Van Peteghem organ from 1788. Both locations are classified as World Heritage by the UNESCO. In september 2000, Mr. Ponet was appointed inspector for the art education in the state academies of music, music schools and conservatories, and in April 2012 he was appointed as the city organist of Leuven (Belgium).