"Riga Classic Strings" • International Cello and Violin Competition and Festival


Violin Jury Members

Eva Bindere

Eva Bindere is a violinist – a chamber musician and a soloist. She was born in Riga, Latvia, in a well-known family of musicians. As a young girl Eva took her first steps towards becoming a musician in Emils Darzins Special Music College (Emīla Dārziņa Speciālā mūzikas vidusskola) and then moved forward to do her Bachelor’s degree in Jazeps Vitols Latvian Academy of Music (Jāzepa Vītola Latvijas Mūzikas akadēmija) with teachers Anete Zvaigzne, Uldis Sprudzs and Andris Baumanis. It was the autumn of 1997 when she was awarded a scholarship to study with Eduard Schmieder in Dallas, USA for a year.

Wen Zhou

Wen Zhou Li is originally from China where he was educated at the Central Broadcasting Institute in Beijing and after the graduation, he joined the China Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra. In 1982, he left China to farther his musical education in USA and Canada. During his 6 years in North America, Mr. Li performed with many orchestras as well as regularly giving recitals and chamber music concerts. His talent as a violin teacher was discovered and nurtured by his professor, Mauricio Fuks when he was studying at the McGill University, Montreal, Canada. From 1986 he became Professor Fuks’ assistant at McGill University. In 1988, at the invitation of Yehudi Menuhin, Mr. Li came to England with his professor to teach at the Yehudi Menuhin School and after 8 years of closely working with Yehudi Menuhin, he was regarded as one of the most successful violin teacher in UK. From 1996-2013, Mr. Li has furthered his teaching career by taking on a violin professor and Principal Violin Tutor position at the Royal Northern College of Music and Chetham's School of Music, Manchester, UK. From 2009-2013, he had been appointed as a Visiting Professor at Leeds College of Music, UK. Since 2017, he has appointed as Violin Visiting Tutor at Royal Birmingham Conservatory.

Yair Kless

Born in Israel, Yair Kless began playing the violin at the early age. He graduated from Tel Aviv Music Academy, under the tutelage of Israel Amidan. Following a recommendation from Nathan Milstein, Yair moved to Brussels to study with Prof. Andre Gertler in the Royal conservatory and Chapelle- Musicale Reine-Elizabeth, graduating with the highest distinction in both instrumental and chamber music.

Yossi (Yossef) Tavor

Yossi Tavor graduated from the Jerusalem Academy of Music. He is a television and radio journalist, a columnist on Cultural Affairs, a presenter at the radio "Orpheus" an author of numerous articles in Russian, Hebrew and English languages. A co-author of documentary films for the tv-channel "Culture" about the famous Russian pianists Nikolay Petrov, Mikhail Voskresensky, Dmitri Bashkirov and a Jury Member of the performing arts in Israel and Russia.

Grigory Levontin

He was born on March 22, 1955 in Moscow. He got his professional education as a violinist in the Gnessin Music School (1970-1974) and in the State Musical-pedagogical Institute of Gnessin (1974-1979; class of the honored artist of RSFSR S. Akhtyamova). During his studies, Grigory Levontin has performed as a soloist and as a member of different chamber ensembles. He has worked in the orchestra of the Vakhtangov theatre since 1977. In 1979, he entered the Moscow orchestra of chamber music of the State RSFSR concert-tour association “Rosconcert” and got to the premier violin group. During the period since 1982 to 1990, he was holding the position of the concertmaster of the second violins. Besides, during his orchestra work he has regularly performed as the soloist of the orchestra. Since 1986 as the orchestra inspector he has actively participated in organization and managing the concerts in Moscow and other cities of the Soviet Union.

Cello Jury Members

Boris Andrianov

Boris Andrianov is the Artistic Director of and the inspiration behind the new Star Generation project, which produces and manages concerts by talented young musicians in all cities and regions throughout Russia. For this project, in 2009 Boris Andrianov was awarded the Russian Federation Prize for Culture. In 2008 Moscow hosted the first-ever cello festival in Russia, VIVACELLO festival the Artistic Director of which is Boris Andrianov.

Meehae Ryo

Deutsche Gramophone Recording Artist Ms. Meehae Ryo’s breathtaking technical virtuosity and captivating melody puts her as the most recognized cellist in the Republic of Korea. She endeavors to play music which makes both herself and her audiences happy. Not only is she a beloved cellist, but she is also determined to train pupils by sharing her experiences and skills. Meehae had her first cello lesson at age of six. After she won many of national competitions, her ambition to study abroad at early age, she asked her parents to search for a school which could provide the best educational background to prepare her to become a true musician for inside and outside. She accepted a place at Juilliard School when she was sixteen and then finished her studies with DMA degree at the University of Michigan in the USA.

Alexander Buzlov

Alexander Buzlov won many top prizes at the world’s most important cello competitions such as at the Feuermann Competition (Grand Prix, Audience Prize), ARD Competition Munich (second prize), Concours de Genève (second prize), Belgrade (first prize), Monte Carlo (first prize) and the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow (Silver Medal, Rostropovich Prize). Today Alexander Buzlov performs throughout Russia’s most prestigious halls as well as at venues abroad such as the Berlin Philharmony, Carnegie Hall, Herkulessaal Munich, Lincoln Center, Santa Cecilia, La Scala, Théatre des Champs Élysées. He has appeared with many renowned ensembles, among them the Mariinsky Theatre Symphony Orchestra, Orchester des Bayrischen Rundfunks, Orchestra of St. Lukes, Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken, The Svetlanov State Academic Symphony Orchestra, the Moscow Soloists chamber ensemble, Munich Chamber Ensemble, “New Russia” Symphony Orchestra, the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Russia, the Grand Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, the St Petersburg Academic Philharmonic and numerous others.

Peter Grote

Peter Grote was born in 1952 and grew up in a family of musicians. His first teacher on the cello was his father, himself a leading cellist. While still attending junior high school, Peter began with professional musical studies. He took successfully part in the youth competitions in Germany “Jeunesses musicales” – as well in solo as chamber music categories. 1966 he won with his brothers 2nd prize in the national edition as string trio and 1970, also with his brothers, 1st prize as string quartet.

Dmitry Yablonsky

Grammy nominated conductor, cellist and conductor Dmitry Yablonsky was born in Moscow into a musical family. He began playing the cello when he was 5 years old and was accepted to the Central Music School for gifted children. At the age of 9 he gave his orchestral debut playing Haydn’s cello concerto. Since then, his career had taken him to the most important stages in the world, such as the Carnegie Hall, La Scala, Moscow Great Hall, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Hall, Taiwan National Hall, Teatre Mogador, Cite de la Musique, Louvre, among others.