Russia may be the land of his heart, but Vladimir Spivakov’s attachment to his homeland is not incompatible with his dream of an all-encompassing creative movement to bring peoples and artists together. This vision has been the driving force behind his artistic direction of the Colmar International Music Festival over the past eighteen years (since 1989). An extremely talented violin virtuoso and charismatic conductor of the chamber orchestra Moscow Virtuosi, Vladimir Spivakov is also the music director and principal conductor of the National Philharmonic of Russia (N.P.R).
After winning numerous prizes in international violin competitions (Montreal, Long-Thibaud in Paris, Tchaikovsky in Moscow, Paganini in Genova, etc.), Vladimir Spivakov began a brilliant international career. A triumphant tour of the United States in 1975 and numerous concerts in Europe launched his career in the West. The most celebrated orchestras welcomed him as a soloist: Chicago, New York, London, Amsterdam, Vienna, Berlin, etc., and he played under the direction of the greatest conductors: Bernstein, Solti, Ozawa, Maasel, Abbado, Giulini… In 1979, after his debut as a conductor at the Chicago Ravinia Festival in the U.S.A., Vladimir Spivakov formed his own orchestra, the Moscow Virtuosi, in Russia. He brought together solo musicians belonging to the best formations in his country to form this outstanding chamber orchestra. Very rapidly, the Moscow Virtuosi earned an international reputation, giving more than 120 concerts a year throughout the world. In light of his exceptional gifts as a violinist, his recordings and his exemplary work as the artistic director for the Festival of Colmar, the public has applauded Vladimir Spivakov as a truly complete artist. In 2000, France bestowed its highest civilian honor, the Légion d’honneur, on Vladimir Spivakov to officially recognize his contribution to the promotion of music and culture.
A man with a heart
In 1994, Vladimir Spivakov set up his own foundation providing assistance to talented young artists and musicians in the former Soviet Union and the West. Dozens of these young virtuosos have already performed in concerts in Russia, Europe, the United States and at the Colmar Music Festival.
In 2006, Vladimir Spivakov was named "Artist for Peace" by UNESCO.
Important dates in Vladimir Spivakov’s career...
1944: Born in Oufa, in the province of Bachkiry, formerly part of the Soviet Union, into a family of musicians.
1967: Prize winner at the Paganini Violin Competition in Genoa
1969: First prize winner at the International Violin Competition in Montreal
1970: Second prize winner at the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow
1976: Conducting debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra
1979: Creation of the chamber orchestra, the Moscow Virtuosi
1989: Appointed as Artistic Director of the Colmar International FestivalSince
1990: Member of the jury of several major violin competitions
1994: Creation of the Charity Foundation in order to provide assistance to young talented musicians by adopting both a humanitarian and artistic approach
1997: President of the Pablo Sarasate International Violin Competition in Spain
1999: Awarded title "Officer of Arts and Letters" by the French government
2000: Awarded title Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur by the French government
2003: Music Director and Principal Conductor of the National Philharmonic of Russia (the N.P.R)
2004: President of the jury of the Violin Masters in Monte Carlo; President of the "House of Music" in Moscow
2006: President of the jury (violin) of the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow; Named UNESCO “Artist for Peace”
2007: President of the jury (violin) of the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow;