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Zakhar Bron is at it again

April 5, 2017 by norman lebrecht

5 comments.


Elea Nick won first prize at the international Young Virtuoso competition in Sofia, Bulgaria, yesterday.

She is a student of Zakhar Bron.

Professor Bron was chair of the jury that chose her.


Comments (5)

  1. Violinlover says:

    I am sure she will now have a huge career boost 😉
    And her manipulated fanpage with 11.000 fake likes will for sure help even more :))))

  2. Ordinarymusiclover says:

    Norman, on this one you appear to be suffering from the happy delusion that everyone else is playing fair. The vast majority of music competitions are “political”, and this will only stop when all are subject to public disclosure of all marks in all rounds by all members of the jury. Funnily enough, this is not a popular suggestion. Sometimes this is extreme (a competition this year in Spain where the chairman of the jury handed the prize to – his son) sometimes more covert (one juror who rides down the views of others). But the reason it matters – which brown knows well – is that for some reason competition winning launches careers, and without patronage or a lot of money there are few other ways to do this. Perhaps some more pressure for transparency, and more willingness to identify young players independently from small concert venues, rather than jumping on the bandwagon of competition winners, would help

  3. MacroV says:

    One option here might be if orchestra, talent agencies, etc, simply refused to recognize results/winners of competitions where such incestuous ties exist, and didn’t sign winners from the less reputable ones. I assume it’s less of a problem at the big violin competitions (Indy, Tchaikovsky, QE, Montreal). Even without some official process, you would think that those playing it relatively straight would be the only ones people in the business take seriously.

  4. NYMike says:

    Nothing in this clip stopping before the cadenza distinguishes her playing from hundreds of others.

  5. Laurie says:

    OrdinaryMusicLover is absolutely right. There is certainly corruption at almost all the major competitions these days. So many teachers on the jury bring students, but I have seen other connections influence results as well – conductors whose prodigies are in the competition, past teachers that don’t show up on the bio so nobody knows unless you know the history of the competitor, etc. And not only do they usually not show the scoring, many of the competitions don’t livestream or record the earlier rounds in an effort to cover up the fact that some of the best competitors are being eliminated. It is shameful, and one must wonder how these adults can live with themselves. Students without connections really have to just hope for the best but expect the worst. These kids are just hoping that they might stumble on the one fair competition that brings their talent to light. Not an ideal situation.


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