1st International Violin and Cello Competition for Young Musicians
In association with the Jerusalem Music Center
March 6 - 10, 2022
Due to the Pandemic the Competition is postponed to 2023. Exact Timing To Be Declared
The Raanana Pais Music Center
Celebrating the centennial of the city of Rananana 1922-2022
The Jury Panel
Prof. Mihaela Martin
Mihaela Martin is a very versatile musician who has played the violin since she was five years old. Equally at home as a soloist and as part of a chamber ensemble, Martin has collaborated with musical greats such as Kurt Masur, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Sir Yehudi Menuhin, Martha Argerich, Radu Lupu, Leon Fleisher, and Menahem Pressler.
Born in Bucharest, Romania, Martin began studying the violin under the guidance of her father, himself a violinist. Her talent soon became clear and she began to win national competitions. She went on to gain recognition outside of Romania, being awarded top prizes at major international competitions, such as the International Tchaikovsky Competition, the Montreal International Music Competition, the Queen Elisabeth Competition and the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis.
Martin was both humanly and musically influenced by two outstanding musicians, who were her teachers at different stages of her musical development: Silvia Marcovici and the great pedagogue, Stefan Gheorghiu, with whom she studied for 10 years. She left Romania in 1986 and has since resided in Germany.
She is a regular guest at many chamber music festivals, and pursues her intense love for chamber music as member of the Michelangelo String Quartet, which she helped found in 2003, and with whom she continues to tour extensively.
Another of Martin’s great passions is sharing her musical knowledge and curiosity with the young generation of musicians, and following their development closely. She holds professorships at the Hochschule für Musik in Köln, Kronberg Academy, and at the Barenboim-Said Akademie.
Prof. Frans Helmerson
Swedish cellist Frans Helmerson has performed with many of today's finest conductors, including Seiji Ozawa, Colin Davies, Neeme Järvi, Evgeni Svetlanov, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Herbert Blomstedt, Sergiu Comissiona, Frübeck de Burgos, Kurt Sanderling and Mstislav Rostropovich. He has also toured with a number of major orchestras throughout Europe, the US, South America, Asia and Australia.
Helmerson studied in Göteborg, Rome and London with Guido Vecchi, Guiseppe Selmi and William Pleeth. He also benefitted greatly from the guidance and support of Mstislav Rostropovitch.
Helmerson's love for chamber music led him to take the position as artistic director of the Korsholm Festival in Finland from 1994-2001. He frequently appears at a number of international festivals, such as Verbier, Prades, Naantali, Kuhmo and Ravinia. In 2002, he formed the Michelangelo String Quartet.
He held a professorship at the Musikhochschule in Cologne and then moved on to his current positions as guest professor at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler Berlin, professor at the Kronberg Academy Masters and lecturer in cello at the Barenboim-Said Akademie.
His recordings include concertos by Dvorak and Shostakovich, the Brahms Double Concerto with violinist Mihaela Martin, the Bach Solo Suites, and others.
Prof. Zvi Carmeli
A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music and the former solo violist of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, Zvi Carmeli has performed as soloist with orchestras such as the Gorzow Philharmonic and the Rubinstein Philharmonic (Lodz) Poland, Kuopio Symphony Orchestra Finland, Klaipeda Chamber Orchestra Lithuania, Jerusalem Camerata Israel , Harmonices Mundi Orchestra Linz and the Salzburg Chamber Soloists Austria, the European Community Chamber Orchestra and more.
Zvi Carmeli has collaborated in performance with ensembles such as the Amsterdam chamber music society, the Concertante chamber players New York, the Zurich Ensemble Switzerland, the Fine Arts Quartet, the Budapest Accademica Quartet, the Amernet Quartet and the Mendelssohn Piano Trio Berlin. He has concertized through out Europe and Russia as a member of "The Four Cultures Quartet" - resident ensemble of the Center for Dialogue , Lodz Poland . He has Participated in chamber music festivals such as the "Emilia Romagna" - Italy , Rosklide "Schubertiade"- Denmark , "Prussia Cove" - England, "Middelberg " and "Amadeo" – Holland, "Ars Musica" - Belgium, "Moab" - U.S.A and "Kfar Blum Kol Hamusika" - Israel.
Chamber music Performances have included collaboration with Violinists Vadim Repin, Benjamin Schmid, Hagai Shaham, Nora Chastain and Rainer Honek, Cellists Robert Cohen, Paul Watkins and Yehuda Hannani, Violists Atar Arad and Vladimir Mendelssohn, Pianists Homero Francesch , Enrico Pace and Gianluca Cascioli.
A founding member of the SoLaRe String Trio with Vesko Eschkenazy and Tanya Tominkins - 1st prize winners of the Netherlands Impresaariat Chamber Music competition, Zvi Carmeli has performed with the trio extensively throughout Europe and the U.S.A. in venues such as the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Herkules Hall Munich, the 92nd St. Y New York and the Herbst Theater in San Francisco.
Zvi Carmeli has recorded a variety of chamber music for Divox, Edel Classics, Ottavo, Ars Nova, Kontrapunkt, New World records and the KAM Amsterdam Concertgebouw cd series, along with recordings for Dutch, Spanish, German, American and Israeli Radio and Television productions.
A senior lecturer of viola and chamber music at the Jerusalem Academy for Music and Dance, Prof. Carmeli is also the head of its Chamber music department and the Younes and Soraya Program for Excellence in chamber music, as well as the initiator and faculty member of yearly chamber music exchange projects between the Jerusalem Academy and the Franz Liszt Academy Budapest , and between the Julius Stern Institute and the Jerusalem Music Center.
Prof. Carmeli is founder of the "Bronislaw Huberman Program for outstanding young string players " at the Jerusalem Music Center , and regularly gives master classes at courses such as the "Lenk Sommer Academie" - Switzerland, "Pro Bono Musicae" - Poland, "Stage" - Spain, “Chietti Classica” - Italy, "Musica Mundi" - Belgium, "Peter de Groot" - Holland, "Viersener musiksommer" - Germany, and the Jerusalem Music Center Summer Courses & "Itzchak Perlman Project" – Israel.
A native Israeli, Gilad started playing the violin at the age of 6 in Belgium.
In Israel Gilad studied with Haim Taub, Gad Kogan, Yair Kless and Ilona Faher.
Gilad consistently won grants from the American-Israel Foundation, and led many major
orchestras and musical groups in Israel and abroad, among them: The Haifa Symphony Orchestra, the Tel Aviv Soloists Ensemble, the "Kaprizma" Ensemble and the "San Carlo" Opera in Naples, Italy.
For the last eight years Gilad has led the NKO Chamber Orchestra and played also as a soloist in Israel and on tours in Croatia, Italy, France, Germany and recently China; he performed the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in Beijing, Shanghai and other major cities.
Gilad is regularly invited to play as soloist with major orchestras in Israel and abroad, and participated in festivals such as: "Upper Galilee", "Banff" in Canada, "Israel Festival", "Pro" in Germany and premiered the Luciano Berio's duets for two violins.
As a passionate chamber player, Gilad collaborated with Pinchas Zuckerman, Guy Braunstein, the "Jerusalem Quartet", "Jerusalem Trio", Bernard Greenhaus and the pianist Revital Hachamoff, with whom he played on tours in the U.S.A and Bulgaria and performed numerous radio live broadcast concerts.
Prof. Marcel Bergman
Marcel Bergman was born in 1950 in Ukraine, studied at the Special Music Secondary school in Lviv, then at the St.-Petersburg (Leningrad) Conservatory and subsequently taught there.
Marcel joined the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra after immigrating to Israel in 1978, and during the same season was appointed its Principal Cellist - the position he holds at present.
Marcel appeared as soloist with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in Israel and on its
tours abroad, under the baton of Zubin Mehta, Kurt Masur, Christoph Eschenbach, Charles
Dutoit and others. In 1995 he was the soloist in the first Israel Philharmonic performances of "Don Quixote" (Richard Strauss), conducted by Zubin Mehta - in Israel, as well as on the following USA tour. He also played as soloist with various orchestras in Israel and abroad.
Since the 1990s Marcel has taught at the Music Academy (Tel Aviv University) and was
Visiting Professor (cello) at the Sibelius - Academy, Helsinki, Finland. He has given master
classes at various courses and festivals in Finland, Germany, England, USA and Canada.
For 20 years (1983-2003) Marcel was a member of the Israel Piano Trio, which has been touring extensively throughout the world and appeared at the major festivals such as: Maggio Musicale (Florence), Tivoli (Copenhagen), City of London, Prague Spring, Edinburgh, Cheltenham. The Trio discography includes the complete Piano Trios of Brahms, Schumann, Mendelssohn and Schubert, released by CRD (England).
Prof. Kyril Zlotnikov
Kyril Zlotnikov has served as a jury member on several international competition panels, including in 2016 at the ARD international Music Competition in Munich, Germany.
Born in Minsk, Belarus to a family of professional musicians, Kyril began his studies at the Belarusian State Music Academy with Prof. Vladimir Perlin. He continued his studies in Israel with Prof. Uzi Wiesel and Hillel Zori, completing his musical education under the direction Prof. Michael Khomitzer in Jerusalem Rubin Academy of Music and Dance. While a student, Kyril participated in master classes and courses with such prominent musicians as Isaac Stern, Yo-Yo Ma, Natalia Gutman, Boris Pergamenschikov, Aldo Parisot and Georgy Kurtag.
Since 1991 Kyril was a recipient of a scholarship for musical achievements from the America-Israel Culture Foundation, won prizes in many contests including the Clairmont Competition, the Braun-Roger Siegl Competition and the Pierre Tarcali Prize.
He is a founding member of the Jerusalem Quartet - one of the most dynamic and exciting young quartets currently performing that has become a leading string quartet in Israel and that is recognized for its artistic creativity. The musicians have been giving multiple performances all over the world. Since 2002 the Jerusalem Quartet records exclusively for Harmonia Mundi.
Along with his extensive chamber music appearances Kyril has performed and been broadcast as a soloist with internationally renowned orchestras, such as the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, the Ludwigsburg Symphony Orchestra, The Gulbenkian Orchestra, West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, Jerusalem Camerata and enjoys artistic collaboration with acclaimed conductors including Daniel Barenboim, Zubin Mehta, Pierre Boulez, Lawrence Foster, Asher Fish and Simone Young. He has a wide repertoire covering the important cello works of the baroque, the classical period, romantic and contemporary music.
Kyril is a regular guest at major chamber music festivals such as, to name a few - the Proms Festival, Verbier festival, Vancouver, Gstaad, Saltzburg, Rheingau, Ravinia, the Schleswig-Holstein, the Jerusalem Festival and the Schwetzingen Festival. A keen recitalist and chamber musician, Kyril has shared the stage with the foremost artists of today such as Daniel Barenboim, András Schiff, Elisabeth Leonskaja, Pierre Boulez, Elena Bashkirova, Mitsuko Uchida, Natalia Gutman, Tabea Zimmerman, Miriam Fried, Michael Tree, Asher Fish, Nikolaj Znaider, Lang Lang, Itamar Golan and Martin Fröst.
Between 2001 - 2012 Kyril was a principal cellist and a teacher of the cello group at the "West-Eastern Divan Orchestra" under Maestro Daniel Barenboim. Also, he frequently took part in special projects and tours of the Berlin Staatskapelle Orchestra as a principal cellist.
Kyril recorded many recordings with the Jerusalem Quartet, as well as recording the complete Mozart piano trios with Maestro Daniel Barenboim and violinist Nikolaj Znaider. The two CDs were released by EMI in April 2006.
Kyril plays a 1710 Giovanni Battista Ruggieri cello which was generously loaned to him for life from a private collection.
Since 2020 Kyril is an ambassador for Jargar strings.
Alexander Pavlovsky who is the founder and first violinist of the internationally acclaimed Jerusalem Quartet has established a reputation as a highly accomplished chamber musician, soloist and teacher. The Jerusalem Quartet is a beloved and well-received guest on many of North America and Europe's great cultural centers and concert halls: New York, Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Washington D.C, the Zürich Tonhalle, the Munich Herkulessaal, Wigmore Hall, London's Queen Elizabeth Hall , the Parisian Philharmonie and Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Berliner Philharmonie and Konzerthaus, St. Petersburg's Mariinsky Concert Hall. The Jerusalem Quartet also tours regularly in Asia and Australia. The quartet records exclusively for the Harmonia Mundi label and its recordings won a world record of three BBC Music Magazine Awards , two Diapason D'Or Awards and an ECHO Music Award.
Alexander Pavlovsky has collaborated with many world-known musicians such as András Schiff, Daniel Barenboim, Mitsuko Uchida,, Elisabeth Leonskaja, Menahem Pressler, Jessye Norman, Gary Hoffman, Stiven Isserlis, Natalia Gutman, Frans Helmerson, Joshua Bell, Paul Meyer, Sharon Kam and Nobuko Imai.
Alexander regularly gives masterclasses in Europe, America, Australia and served on the jury panel at the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition and Prague Spring International Music Competition.
Since 2008 Alexander is Artistic Director of the "Zeist Music Days" International
Chamber Music Festival in Holland.
Alexander plays a 1696 Antonio Stradivarius and a 2009 Stefan-Peter Greiner violin.
The Competition Director
Prof. Zvi Plesser
Israeli Cellist Zvi Plesser has a remarkably varied career, which has combined appearances as cello soloist, chamber musician, educator and music director.
Based in Israel, Mr. Plesser has concertized worldwide and collaborated with some of our time’s leading instrumentalists and conductors. As soloist he has performed with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, the Israel Symphony Orchestra, The Israel Chamber Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington D.C., the Academy of Saint Martin in the Fields, the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, The Jalisco Philharmonic Orchestra, Hamburg Symphony Orchestra, and the Sofia Philharmonic under conductors Zubin Mehta, Sir Neville Marriner, Asher Fisch, Omer Wellber, Guy Braunstein, Ariel Zuckerman, Jesus Medina, Steven Sloan and Sergiu Comissiona.
In January 2015 Mr. Plesser appeared as a soloist with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra in a special concert in Berlin Philharmonie. In the fall of 2016 Mr. Plesser toured Australia and Thailand as soloist with the Israel Camerata – Jerusalem, conducted by Avner Biron.
Mr. Plesser was a member of the Huberman String Quartet and was a founding member of Concertante.
A dedicated chamber musician, he collaborates frequently with leading instrumentalists including several collaborations with Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra principal players. In recent season he has performed in such venues as: Paris Champs-Elysees, Musee du Louvre and Salle Pleyel, Vienna Konzerthouse, Berlin Philharmonie, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, London Wigmore Hall and Southbank Centre among others. Mr. Plesser frequently collaborated with the Jerusalem String Quartet with whom he played on a 14 concert tour of Australia. He has participated in Music festivals around the world, including the Marlboro Festival in the US, the Cervantino Fetsival in Mexico, the Jerusalem International Chamber Music Festival - Israel, Le Pont Festival in Japan, the Kuhmo Festival in Finland, Salon-de-Provence in France, Clasclas festival in Spain and the Rolandseck Festival in Germany.
In 2011 he was appointed music director for the” Voice of Music Festival in the Upper Galilee,” – Israel’s oldest chamber music festival. Mr. Plesser has revitalized the festival by introducing innovative programs that have gained the attention of both the audiences and the press.
In the last few years he has collaborated with his colleague and friend Hillel Zori in arranging and performing the Six Bach Solo Suites for two cellos.
Mr. Plesser is a graduate of the Juilliard School where he studied with Zara Nelsova. His principal teachers include Zvi Harel in Israel and David Soyer in the United States. Mr. Plesser is a Professor on the faculty of the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance where he was head of the String Department and director of the Nazarian Chamber Music Program. In the past he taught at North Carolina School of the arts and in Hochschule für Musik Würzburg in Germany. Mr. Plesser regularly teaches at the Perlman Music Program in the US. He is frequently invited to give masterclasses and workshops in musical centers around the world. In 2013 he was invited to serve as a jury member in the Cassado Cello Competition in Japan.
Mr. Plesser has been heard on various radio and television programs and has recorded for Helicon, Kleos, Meridian and more. A CD recording of complete cello works of composer Jan Radzynski was recently issues with Centauer Records. A graduate of the Jerusalem Music Center as part of the program for Outstanding Young Musicians headed by Maestro Isaac Stern, Mr. Plesser won the prestigious Francoise Shapira Competition, the 41st annual Washington International Competition and was the recipient of the America-Israel Cultural Foundation Scholarships.