Chairman of the jury
Marcel Poot
Belgium, °1901 - 1988
Marcel Poot (1901-1988), the son of Jan Poot, director of the Royal Flemish Theatre, grew up in an artistic milieu. He took his first music lessons with the organist Gerard Nauwelaerts and subsequently studied solfège, piano and harmony from 1916 to 1919 at the Royal Conservatory in Brussels with Arthur De Greef, José Sevenans and Martin Lunssens. His first prizes in counterpoint (1922) and fugue (1924) were earned at the Royal Conservatory in Antwerp with Lodewijk Mortelmans. He also studied composition and orchestration privately with Paul Gilson.

Together, Poot and Gilson published La Revue Musicale Belge, a periodical that appeared starting in 1925. In that same year, he and seven other of Gilson’s students set up the group known as Les Synthétistes, which aimed to create a synthesis of the achievements of current musical evolutions, without sacrificing their individuality. In 1930, he won the Rubens Prize, which allowed him to study for three years with Paul Dukas at the Ecole Normale de Musique in Paris.

Marcel Poot began his career at the State Secondary School in Vilvoorde and also taught piano, solfège and music history at the music academy in that city. He taught practical harmony (1939) and counterpoint (1940-1949) at the Royal Conservatory in Brussels before becoming director of that school (1949-1966). Besides this, he was a lecturer at the Institut Supérieur des Arts Décoratifs, headmaster of the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel (1970-1976), a member of the Royal Flemish Academy for Sciences, Letters and Fine Arts, a jury member for the Queen Elisabeth Competition (1963-1981), chairman of SABAM (composers’ rights organisation), the Union of Belgian Composers and CISAC (the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers), and he was a jury member for various composition competitions.
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Toshiya Eto
Japan, °1928 - 2008
After graduating from Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music in 1948, Toshiya Eto studied at the Curtis Institute of Music with Efrel Zimbalist. While attending the conservatory, he gave a recital at Carnegie Hall in 1951. He devoted himself to educating younger players, including Akiko Suwanai and Mariko Senju. A member of the Japan Art Academy, he served as chief of Toho Gakuen School of Music. He has recorded for RCA.
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Zino Francescatti
France, °1902 - 1991
Of Italian background, violinist Zino Francescatti was born in Marseilles in 1902. His real name was René-Charles Francescatti. Both his parents played the violin, and his father René had been a student of Paganini. The younger Francescatti performed the Paganini Violin Concerto No. 1 at his official Paris debut in 1925.

By that time he was already an experienced performer. He gave his first concert at age 5 and played the Beethoven violin concerto at 10. From his late teens he concertized regularly, and after arriving in Paris in 1924 he formed a duo with none less than Maurice Ravel and embarked on an international tour. In the 1920s and 1930s Francescatti toured the globe, although his U.S. debut didn't come until 1939, once again with the Paganini Concerto No. 1, in a New York Philharmonic concert.

Despite his fondness for Paganini, Zino Francescatti was more identified with elegant, natural-seeming playing than with sheer virtuoso fireworks. Later in life he toured and recorded with the similarly fluid French pianist Robert Casadesus in duo repertory; they recorded a complete set of Beethoven's violin and piano sonatas, lyrical works ideally suited to their combined styles. Living in New York but often returning to France to perform and teach, he made durable recordings of several major repertory works, including the Beethoven concerto with conductor Bruno Walter and the Columbia Symphony Orchestra. Zino Francescatti retired in 1976, moved back to France, and sold his prized Stradivarius instrument to Salvatore Accardo. In 1987 he used part of the proceeds to establish an educational foundation and a violin competition in the city of Aix-en-Provence.
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Raymond Gallois Montbrun
, °1918 - 1994
Né en 1918 à Saïgon, Raymond Gallois Montbrun quitte sa ville de naissance dès sa petite enfance et effectue ses études scolaires à Neuilly-sur-Seine. De 1930 à 1942 il étudie au Conservatoire national supérieur de musique de Paris, auprès de Firmin Touche (violon), Jean Gallon (harmonie), Noël Gallon (fugue et contrepoint) et Henri Busser (composition musicale).

En 1942 il gagne le Premier Second Grand Prix de Rome de composition musicale avec la cantate Pygmalion délivré et en 1944 le Premier Grand Prix de Rome de composition musicale avec la cantate Louise de la Miséricorde, sur un texte de Charles Clerc.

Entre 1944 et 1957 il mène une double carrière de violoniste concertiste et de compositeur. Il fait de nombreuses tournées de concerts en Europe, en U.R.S.S., en Afrique du Nord, au Moyen et Extrême-Orient et enregistre des disques pour Erato-France. À l'Institut Français de Tokyo il donne des cours de violon, d'écriture et de composition musicale de 1952 à 1954. Parallèlement, il donne des conférences au Japon, en Allemagne et au Canada sur l'enseignement musical français.

Directeur de l'Ecole nationale de musique de Versailles entre 1957 et 1962, Raymond Gallois Montbrun crée avec la Municipalité le Festival de Versailles. En 1962, il devient Président de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire (jusqu'en 1967) et Directeur du Conservatoire national supérieur de musique de Paris (jusqu'en 1983). Il est ensuite Directeur artistique du Concours international Long-Thibaud, Président des 5 Académies de l'Institut de France, Président intérimaire du Concours international Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud et Président du Comité Directeur du Concours international Long-Thibaud.

En 1980 Raymond Gallois Montbrun est élu Membre titulaire de l'Académie des Beaux-Arts au fauteuil de Paul Paray. Il est également Officier de la Légion d'Honneur, Grand Officier de l'Ordre du Mérite, Commandeur des Arts et Lettres et Membre de l'Institut.
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Franco Gulli
, °1926 - 2001
Italian violinist Franco Gulli (1926-2001) studied with his father (a graduate of Prague Conservatory under Sevcik) and with Arrigo Serato at the Chigi Academy in Sienna. He pursued further studies with Joseph Szigeti in Switzerland, followed by an international career as a soloist with major orchestras and celebrated conductors. Franco Gulli has also performed as a chamber music player, with pianist Enrica Cavallo and as a founding member of the Italian String Trio, with Bruno Giuranna and Giacinto Caramia. Recordings include the complete cycle of Beethoven sonatas and string trios, the Mozart violin concertos and Paganini’s Fifth Concerto. Franco Gulli has taught at the Chigi Academy of Sienna, Italy, the Lucerne Conservatory, Switzerland, and the Indiana University School of Music in Bloomington, Indiana, where he carried the title of Distinguished Professor of Music.
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Leonid Kogan
Russian Federation, °1924 - 1982
One of the twentieth century's greatest violinists, Leonid Kogan conceived a fascination for the violin by age three. At six, he began lessons with Philip Yampolsky, a pupil of Leopold Auer. When his family moved to Moscow when he was ten, he began studies with Abram Yampolsky. He progressed through the Central School of Music, then the Moscow Conservatory, where he trained from 1943 to 1948. Postgraduate studies at the conservatory occupied him from 1948 until 1951.

At age 12, Leonid Kogan was heard by violinist Jacques Thibaud, who predicted a great career for him. Although his parents resisted exploiting their son as a prodigy, he made his debut at 17 and performed in many Soviet venues while still a student. Wider recognition came when Kogan shared first prize at the 1947 Prague World Youth Festival. In 1951, he won first prize at the Queen Elisabeth Competition. David Oistrakh, who was a member of the jury (along with Thibaud), thereafter came to regard Kogan as a colleague, while Kogan closely observed his elder associate during the latter's evening classes for other students.

After teaching at the Moscow Conservatory and playing a busy schedule of concerts in the Soviet Union over the next few years, Kogan made his first appearances in Paris and London in 1955, following those with a tour of South America in 1956 and another of the United States in 1957. After being named People's Artist in 1964, Kogan received the Lenin Prize in 1965.
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Alberto Lysy
Argentina, °1935 - 2009
One of the leading musicians of his age, Alberto Lysy (1935-2009) has played with world-renowned orchestras, from the New York Philharmonic and the US National Symphony Orchestra to the Royal London Philharmonic, the RAI Symphony Orchestra in Rome and the Amsterdam Philharmonic, under the baton of such famous conductors as Sir Adrian Boult, Sir Colin Davis, Pierre Boulez and Mstislav Rostropovitch. He has also given chamber music concerts with the greatest musicians of his time, including Benjamin Britten, Pablo Casals, Nadia Boulanger and Yehudi Menuhin, who was his teacher. Alberto Lysy was the artistic director of the International Menuhin Music Academy in Gstaad and Blonay, where he taught the violin. Often invited as a guest instructor, he gave classes in interpretation at leading music schools. Founder of the Camerata Lysy Gstaad, he has toured with this ensemble in Europe, the United States, Canada, South America, the Far East and South Africa.
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Yehudi Menuhin
Great Britain, Switzerland, °1916 - 1999
Yehudi Menuhin was born in New York of Russian-Jewish parents, but later became a British subject. He made his violin debut at the age of seven with the San Francisco Symphony in Lalo's Symphonie Espagnole, following this with a recital in New York a year later. By the time he was eleven he had made his historic debuts in Paris and Carnegie Hall, at twelve in Berlin and at thirteen in London, thus launching himself at an early age on a career that was to take him all over the world for the ensuing decades, playing with all the leading conductors and orchestras. In addition to his renown as a great musician he is equally recognized for his committed humanism, exemplified by his interest in and work for the young, for international understanding, and all the many causes he finds close to his synoptic mind and generous spirit.

lt was on his first visit to lndia in 1952 at the invitation of Prime Minister Pandit Nehru, that he met Ravi Shankar, developing a deep admiration for both Shankar and Indian music. Subsequently, they gave many concerts together and made numerous recordings which sold into the millions; the proceeds of all the coneerts given on his tours of India were donated to charity. In 1960 he was awarded the Nehru Peace Prize for International Understanding. Some thirty years later, in 1992, he was honoured with the title of Ambassador of Goodwill to UNESCO.

In recognition of the many concerts he gave for the Allied Forces during the second World War, flying over from America whenever he could find space in a military plane, Yehudi Menuhin was awarded numerous honours, amongst which were the Legion d'Honneur and the Croix de Lorraine from France, the Order of Merit from Germany, the Ordre Leopold and the Ordre de la Couronne from Belgium, from England the Royal Philharmonic Society's Gold Medal and in 1995 from Spain the Gran Cruz de la Orden del Merito Civil. Queen Elizabeth II bestowed a knighthood on him in 1965 and gave him the Order of Merit in 1987, followed by a life peerage in the Queen's Birthday Honours list in 1993.

He is an Honorary Doctor of over 30 universities in different countries, including those of Oxford, Cambridge, St Andrew's and the Sorbonne as weil as being a Freeman of the cities of Edinburgh, Bath, Reims and Warsaw and holding the Gold Medals of the cities of Paris, New York and Jerusalem. He was also the first Westerner to be made an Honorary Professor of the Beijing Conservatoire in recognition of his concerts in China and of his endeavours in helping many young Chinese violinists to continue their studies in the West.

In 1963 he achieved one of his greatest ambitions, creating a boarding school for promising young musicians, starting from the age of seven and based on the Central School of Moscow, where the students receive both their scholastic and musical education under one roof. Numerous students of the Yehudi Menuhin School, which is officially associated with its Moscow equivalent, have gone on to earn university scholarships.
In 1977 he founded the International Menuhin Music Academy for young graduate string players in Gstaad, Switzerland, the site of the Menuhin Music Festival, of which he was artistic director for 40 years and for which he was awarded Swiss citizenship.

Yehudi Menuhin made his first record at the age of twelve and a year later began his long association with HMV/EMI, with whom he continued to record for many years. He has also recorded for Deutsche Grammophon (the complete Beethoven sonatas with Wilhelm Kempff) and conducted numerous orchestral works for Philips, Virgin, Nimbus and other labels. A great number of his early recordings have been reissued on CD on the occasion of his 75th and 80th birthdays by Biddulph Recordings, and IMG Records issued a boxed set of the complete Beethoven symphonies, performed by the Sinfonia Varsovia under the baton of Lord Menuhin.
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Yfrah Neaman
, °1923 - 2003
After a thorough musical education in Paris and London under Jacques Thibaud, Carl Flesch and Max Rostal, Yfrah Neaman (1923-2003) made his sensational debut in London in 1944 and rapidly conquered the great concert houses of the world. He was an eloquent and tireless champion of twentieth-century composers, whose works - many written especially for him - he has introduced to audiences around the world. He was Professor of Violin and Department Head of the Guildhall School of Music in London and had been offered guest professorships at conservatories and colleges of music all over the world.

As an internationally acclaimed teacher, Yfrah Neaman gave regular master classes troughout Europe, the United States and the Far East. He was also a regular member of the jury of all the major international violin competitions and the joint Artistic Director of the London International Quartet Competition.

He was made a Freeman of the City of London in 1980, and in 1983 was honoured with the Order of the British Empire. In 1997, the Worshipful Company of Musicians offered him the prestigious Cobbett Medal. In 1998, he was awarded a Doctorate Honoris Causa from the National Academy of Music in Sofia, Bulgaria, and received the title of Professor Emeritus for service to the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
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Ricardo Odnoposoff
Austria, °1914 - 2004
Ricardo Odnoposoff was born to Russian immigrants in Buenos Aires. The young man's exceptional musical talent induced his parents to strive for a musical education for him in Europe. An attempt to study with Leopold Auer, was unsuccessful, as the legendary teacher of several generations of violinists who for decades dominated the international musical scene (among them Jascha Heifetz, Nathan Milstein, and Misha Elman), hesitated because of his advanced age to take on such a young pupil. Therefore, upon the recommendation of Erich Kleiber, Ricardo Odnoposoff studied with the concertmaster Rudolf Deman in Berlin, and after only a few months changed to the studio of Carl Flesch.

Ricardo Odnoposoff received his diploma in 1932 after four years of study, but there was another event in that year which had more decisive consequences for the young violinist. In June, the eighteen year old was awarded a prize at the First International Competition for Voice and Violin in Vienna, and the interest of those in influential musical circles was awakened, among them Vienna State Opera director Clemens Krauss. The concertmasters of the opera and of the Philharmonic at the time, Arnold Rosé, Julius Stwertka and Franz Mairecker, were on average over 60 years old. As far back as 1923, Richard Strauss had noted the difficulties of the long-time concertmaster Karl Prill, which led to the violin solo in Strauss' Bürger als Edelmann being performed by Heinrich Schwarz. Prill retired in 1925, but the situation did not greatly improve. Clemens Krauss, who in many difficult situations in the history of the Philharmonic took decisive action, seized the opportunity and in 1933, without an audition, offered the 19 year old Odnoposoff a position as concertmaster.

Ricardo Odnoposoff's first performance at the concertmaster's desk was in Verdi's Othello on December 25, 1933, and his first major Philharmonic test was a gala concert for Richard Strauss' 70th birthday on June 10, 1934. Wilhelm Furtwängler conducted Ein Heldenleben and insisted that Odnoposoff perform the violin solo. Until 1937, he appeared seven times as a soloist with the Vienna Philharmonic, among them two performances of Mozart's Violin Concerto in A major, KV 219. For the 100th birthday of Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921), he made his debut in the subscription concert series with that composer's Violin Concerto in B minor, op. 61, on January 25 and 26, 1936, under Felix von Weingartner.

In Ricardo Odnoposoff's own words, it was necessary for a young Philharmonic concertmaster to present oneself even more prominently as a soloist, and he therefore performed a recital which included the violin concerti of Johannes Brahms and Antonín Dvorák, as well as the Mozart Concerto in D major, KV 218, under the direction of Josef Krips and accompanied by the Philharmonic. In addition, he made numerous other solo appearances in Vienna and on tour, among these a sonata recital with Bruno Walter as pianist on December 2, 1935. This artistic collaboration extended to the Philharmonic concerts also, as Odnoposoff performed a major orchestral solo, the aria from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's opera Il re pastore with Elisabeth Schumann during a Philharmonic tour to London under Walter's direction in June 1937. On this same tour, Odnoposoff represented the orchestra in a special way, performing violin compositions by Fritz Kreisler at a gala at the Austrian embassy.

Probably the most decisive event in Ricardo Odnoposoff's career occurred in 1937. The Ysaÿe Competition was characterized that year by the legendary artistic duel between Ricardo Odnoposoff, Second Prize, and David Oistrakh, First Prize. This sensational success drew considerable attention internationally, and led to a reordering of Odnoposoff's career. His numerous offers to perform as a soloist led him to relinquish his position as concertmaster and he left Austria in the autumn of 1938, with the political developments of the time also playing a role in this decision. Upon returning to Vienna from solo engagements in Italy, he was suddenly refused admission to the opera house. After Austria's annexation by Nazi Germany, Odnoposoff, who had taken on Austrian citizenship and became an enthusiastic Viennese, was, because of the Argentine citizenship which he still maintained, no longer welcome in his own land.

He travelled to Belgium, and subsequently returned to Argentina in 1940. In 1942 he debuted in New York, where he lived until 1956. In that year he returned to Vienna and became Professor at the Music Academy in 1957. He taught at that institution until 1973 and counted three future Vienna Philharmonic members, Paul Guggenberger (1941-2000), Ortwin Ottmaier and Edward Kudlak (retired September 2003), among his students. Odnoposoff's activities as a pedagogue were not limited to Vienna, as he taught in Stuttgart, and until 1994 in Zurich. Despite this extensive teaching work, the focal point of his career remained the concert stage, as thousands of public appearances and a notable number of recordings confirm. Many of those recordings have fortunately been re-released on CD.

After the Second World War, Ricardo Odnoposoff appeared six times with his former Viennese colleagues. On February 1 and 2, 1947 he performed the Brahms concerto with Josef Krips in the subscription concert series, and in 1961 played the Sinfonia concertante, KV 364, with principal violist Rudolf Streng, conducted by Carl Schuricht, for the Mozart gala concert in Innsbruck, as well as for two concerts during Salzburg's Mozart Week. The last appearance of Ricardo Odnoposoff with the Vienna Philharmonic was on June 13, 1965, in the main auditorium of the Konzerthaus, when he played the premiere of the Violin Concerto of Theodor Berger, with Eugene Ormandy conducting.

There was one last personal meeting at the Musikverein on February 25, 1994. Upon his 80th birthday, Ricardo Odnoposoff was awarded the honorary ring of the Vienna Philharmonic after a rehearsal on the podium of the Golden Hall. The ring, surely the orchestra's most personal decoration, was awarded in honor of an artist who, though only belonging to the Philharmonic for four years, remained his entire life a proponent of our orchestra. Until the end of his life he maintained close contact with the Vienna Philharmonic, not only through his former student Ortwin Ottmaier, but also by his personal interest and identification with the orchestra.
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Igor Oistrakh
, °1931
Igor Oistrakh, the son and pupil of David Oistrakh, was born in Odessa in 1931. He won first prizes in the Budapest International Competition of 1949 and at the Wieniawski International Competition in Poznan´ in 1952. His Western debut took place at the Royal Albert Hall in London and was followed by concert tours throughout the world. Igor Oistrakh has performed with the world’s greatest orchestras under conductors such as O. Klemperer, F. Reiner, H. von Karajan, E. Ormandy, C.M. Giulini, G. Solti, L. Maazel, S. Ozawa, and G. Rozhdestvensky. He also performed with Pablo Casals and Yehudi Menuhin. For 27 years Igor Oistrakh played in a unique duo with his father, with whom he made several recordings. Since 1968 he has conducted chamber and symphony orchestras as well as performing as a viola player. He has recorded for EMI, Deutsche Grammophon, Decca, RCA, Collins, Melodia, and Art and Electronics. The recipient of numerous awards, he is President of the Fondation César Franck and serves on the jury of highly prestigious violin competitions (including the Tchaikovsky, Wieniawski, and Carl Flesch competions). Since 1996 he has been a professor at the Royal Conservatory in Brussels.
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Clemens Quatacker
Belgium, °1932 - 2003
Launched very early onto the international stage, Clemens Quatacker first studied with his father and then with J. DeLoof, H. Gadeyne and Y. Menuhin. After winning numerous prizes, among them the Prix Vieuxtemps in Verviers and in 1955 the 10th prize of the Queen Elisabeth Competition, he was invited to undertake concert tours in Europe, Africa, Mexico, Canada, Haiti, Uruguay, Brazil, ... He had many contacts with David Oistrakh, who had a high opinion of his young talent. In 1967 he founded the string quartet that bore his name, an ensemble that found rapid success. His group was regularly asked to perform at festivals, national and international. Clemens Quatacker has taught the violin at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel and has an honourary chair at the Brussels Conservatory.
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Maurice Raskin
Belgium, °1906 - 1984
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Berl Senofsky
United States of America, °1926 - 2002
Berl Senofsky was accepted by the Juilliard School in 1931, at the age of six. There he studied with Louis Persinger and later with Ivan Galamian. Invited to the celebrated Malboro Festival and then to be second concert master of the Cleveland Orchestra, it was in 1955 that he won the Grand Prize of the Queen Elisabeth Competition.

From 1965 until his retirement, Berl Senofsky was on the faculty of the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore as principal professor of violin. He was principal of string classes from 1965 to 1977. That same year, he founded the American Artists International Foundation, an institution that has been able to aid Peter Zazofsky and Irina Tseitlin, among others.

To his international career as soloist, Berl Senofsky adds an extensive discography on Philips, Epic, RCA and Deutsche Grammophon.
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Dmitri Tzyganov
First violin of the Moscow Beethoven Quartet.
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Carlo Van Neste
Belgium, °1914 - 1992
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Piano 2020 postponed to May 2021
How the competition unfolds
H.M. Queen Mathilde
Piano Competitions' Juries
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