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In the 30-year course of his distinguished career, violinist GIDON KREMER has established a worldwide reputation as one of the most original and compelling artists of his generation. He has appeared on virtually every major concert stage with the most celebrated orchestras of Europe and America and has collaborated with today’s foremost conductors and instrumentalists.
His repertoire is unusually extensive, encompassing all of the standard classical and Romantic violin works, as well as music by 20th-century masters such as Henze, Berg and Stockhausen. He has also championed the works of living Russian and Eastern European composers and has performed many important new compositions, several of them dedicated to him. He has become associated with such diverse composers as Alfred Schnittke, Arvo Pärt, Sofia Gubaidulina, Valentin Silvestrov, Luigi Nono, Aribert Reimann, Peteris Vasks, John Adams and Astor Piazzolla, bringing their music to audiences in a way that respects tradition yet remains contemporary.
An exceptionally prolific recording artist, Gidon Kremer has made more than 100 albums for Deutsche Grammophon, Teldec, Philips, ECM, Sony Classical, EMI/Angel and Nonesuch. His recordings have garnered many awards, among them the prestigious “Grand Prix du Disque” and “Deutsche Schallplattenpreis” as well as a Grammy Award in 2001.
Gidon Kremer was born in 1947 in Riga, Latvia. He began his study of the violin at age 4 with his father and grandfather, both of whom were accomplished string players. At 7 his formal education began with his entry into the Riga Music School as a student of Professor Sturestep. By the time he reached the eighth grade he was auditioning for competitions in Poland, Romania and France, and at 16 he was awarded the First Prize of the Latvian Republic. Two years later he successfully auditioned for David Oistrakh and became one of the few students selected to apprentice under that master at the Moscow Conservatory.
In 1967 Mr. Kremer won his first international prize: the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels. Following this triumph, he took a prize in the Montreal Competition, top honors in the Paganini Competition in Genoa, and, finally, the coveted First Prize in the 1970 Tchaikovsky Competition. He plays a Guarnerius del Gesù, “ex-David,” dated 1730.