UPDATE: No Zakhar Bron pupil is in the Wieniawski final

UPDATE: No Zakhar Bron pupil is in the Wieniawski final


norman lebrecht

October 19, 2016

The Wieniawski competition has reached its final stage in Poznan.

Of the seven final candidates, none is a pupil of Zakhar Bron, who is one of the judges.

Previous reports that Richard Lin had studied with Bron are unfounded. Richard assures us that his teachers are Aaron Rosand (no fan of rigged competitions) and Lewis Kaplan.

The finalists are:

Richard Lin (USA)

Ryosuke Suho (Japan)

Veriko Tchumburidze (Georgia/Turkey)

Luke Hsu (USA)

Bomsori Kim (Korea)

Maria Włoszczowska (Poland)




Seji Okamoto (Japan)



  • Simone says:

    Włoszczowska was really bad in 3rd round, she should not go into final – but she is a student of Vengerov…

    On the other hand – Richard Lin was fantastic (despite being Bron student).

    Winner will be Bomsori Kim or Richard Lin.

  • Bomsori Kim or Richard Lin (he is a wonderful violinist, “despite” being a ZB student) will win that competition.

  • Benny says:

    Not correct. Richard studied in Taiwan and USA. Curtis and Juilliard graduate.

  • Milka says:

    Does it really make any difference who wins.
    The field is littered with past winners all interchangable
    and going nowhere.All with nimble fingers and not much else’
    Would anyone cross the street to hear them in concert ?

    There is one out there who is a total original ” Kopatchinskaja”
    who is worth a truck load of prize winners…she is what the art
    is about , for her one crosses the street.

  • Mark Lourie says:

    Simone, may I ask kindly ask what is your real name, and why on earth people on internet are allowed to write anything without showing their real ID?! Now, about Włoszchowska’s Mozart, I invité you all readers and Mr. Lebrecht to listen and to judge for your self. Mozart as we all know is all matter of style preference and taste. In any case, in my opinion Maria is a mature artist and I know from her interview the last time she took lessons from Vengerov it was two years ago. She just wrote his name in her biography because she says she learnt a lot from him.

    But this is all relevant, what is important here, is to stress, that Slippedisc is purely based on negative news and rumors. Mr. Lebrecht perfectly knows, Vengerov, serving for the second time the jury as chairman, might have most of the answers to the painful questions. Did he, Norman ever requested interview from Vengerov on the subject of Competitions? I have not seen one yet. Now another question: does Norman really want the truth from the true artist, or his business is just to create traffic on internet full of sensationalism and negativism.
    You see – Bron’s students are the winners – it’s negative, Bron’s students are out – is also negative. Very disappointing indeed! Think about it: the jury member has just one vote, chairman has two, and only in case of tie between candidates. So, what one jury member can do to promote his students?, especially at the Wieniawski’s Rules, quote from Vengerov on Polish TV: We have decided, a teacher who has given a candidate more then 5 lessons over a year time, and more then 10 lessons over two years of time, can NOT vote for this candidate. That includes masterclasses and regular students of course. Does it make sense? Now, I am really not sure as to why you are all even reading Norman’s news. He would never write about positive news like for instance: Vengerov takes time out of his busy schedule to travel to four cities on four continents to listen to 250 violinists playing for him LIVE, to make sélection for the oldest Violin Competition of Wieniawski! I know, the headline is too long:) enough said, judge for yourself, the world of Music today is run by people like Norman…there must be a positive change first of all in the way we all think. Thanks for reading, Mark

    • norman lebrecht says:

      Mark Lourie, Slippedisc.com is not based on negativity. If you think it is, please stop reading now and go elsewhere. As for being in touch with Maxim Vengerov – yes, I am, when I need to be, though lately it has been him who contacts me first.

    • Simone says:

      Mark, my comment was not offensive at all. Just wrote ‘she was bad in 3rd stage’. Its just an opinion. In the same post i gave a positive opinion about two others. So its 2:1 in positive/negative – so as You see, my post was mostly positive… And I agree – it doesnt matter that she (or someone else from the final) studied with Vengerov…

      The only thing which is really wrong in the entire competition, is that the jury rejected Anna Malesza after 2nd stage. She was absolutely a candidate to one of the first three prizes.

    • Milka says:

      I suppose you mean by changes we all think like you or Vengerov.
      Vengerov poor thing thinks music is about curtsying and bowing to
      each other when playing Mozart,or walking along railroad tracks supposedly
      playing Bach ,wearing gloves with cut out for finger dexterity.
      That Poznan has subscribed to the likes of Bron and Vengerov guiding this
      pointless competition does not speak well for the Poles.

  • Mark lourie says:

    There is one more thing. Bron students did not get in the finals because the level is really high!

  • David says:

    The two Japanese are students of Vengerov too.

  • Mark Lourie says:

    I highly doubt Japanese are his students. But again, without a recorded or live interview (not the internet or newspaper) taken from Vengerov on the subject of the Competitions, of which I believe after all the years of experience Vengerov is an expert, I feel we all are waisting our time. Let’s see if there is something about the Wieniawski on violin channel in the next couple of days. A lot of foreign journalists are here in Poznan. These speculations have to be cleared once and for all. Thanks to all of you who are curious to get to the bottom of it.

  • Mark Lourie says:

    Mr. Lebrecht. I will continue to write at the slippedisc. This is my way to express my disagreement with the way you manipulate people’s minds. As a matter of fact, you always have a choice to interview great personalities – experts in their fields, to avoid unnessessary rumors and gossips. Its worth the effort to help to create classical music following that is shrinking every day. I am sorry to say, Instead you are using your high position to turn most of the news into a bad news. Tomorrow at 10 am NY time – 16.00 Central European time, there is going to be an open interview live at violin channel at their Facebook page with Maxim Vengerov. Dear readers, feel free, including Milka to join, to reveal your real names, let’s learn to play it open and with dignity, and ask your questions whichever they may be to him. What do you have to lose? We are talking here about the oldest Competition – Wieniawski with its prize winners in 1935 – Ginette Neveu, David Oistrach Ida Haendel. Vengerov is chairing this jury for the second time, the honor that has been given only for the second time in the history of this Competition. If you don’t know who he is, I suggest you to listen to some recordings on EMI: Britten violin concerto, Walton viola concerto. Bach Toccata and fugue played on the baroque violin, Isaye solo sonatas, Beethoven, Schostakovich, Prokofiev violin concertos with Rostropovitch LSO. New recording of Sibelius original version and Brahms I have listened on Classic FM. Go to his concerts. Again, Music, like any other form of art is a matter of taste – you may or you may not like it, but, there are personalities you can trust. Vengerov is real and he is alive. He is playing again and even better then before, and that is not just my opinion. So, I suggest before criticizing something, get to know it in details. Why do we always have to wait until the artist dies, so, we can finally take notice. This site is full of obituaries and statements of closures of the recording companies, violent announcements and scandals. Is that how we see the future of Music? I am no one here, but as a music lover and practiced musician, i feel we need to move forward, we need to turn the page. In the name of Music and in support of those who have not lost the passion for it, let’s post as much positive news as possible. I have the privilege to travel quite a bit around the world. There is so much wonder that we don’t even get to hear about! Thanks my friends for reading! Mark

    • norman lebrecht says:

      You are within one strike of getting banned. Read the rules and follow them.

      • Gerhard says:

        Could you please explain what exactly in Mark Lourie’s second post is violating which rules, therefore bringing him “within one strike of getting banned”? I’m sure it will be of interest for other readers as well. Thank you very much!

        • norman lebrecht says:

          He has submitted another post which is more abusive. If you wish to volunteer as a moderator for the site, please send me your credentials.

    • Milka says:

      Your invite is noted…but one cannot take Vengerov seriously …that he can get around
      the finger board with dexterity is a given, though that does not guarantee one has any
      profound knowledge to the art, in this case Vengerov is a good example.
      Why the Poznan Poles allow themselves to be controlled by the likes of Bron & Vengerov
      is the question.

  • mark lourie says:

    Dear Mr. Lebrecht, you have clearly misunderstood my intentions. I am not here to judge, write anything against you, or to violate rules and regulations of the Slippedisc.com Of course, you have the rights to block my posts, and I also have the rights to come anonymously under a different name. That is why I always encourage people to reveal their identity. For people that have some morals it’s more difficult to say somethings looking right into the eyes of another person. So, today’s world allows us to post our comment and be completely anonymous. Doing so, we are only running against ourselves. But that is an independent point of discussions. What I am hoping to convey here, is a view of an active musician who is trying to appeal for justice in the small ever shrinking world of Classical Music. Therefore once again, I kindly ask of your understanding.
    I am like your self, I’m a believer and practicing Judaism. I’m not here in anyway to teach you a lesson. I’m nobody here, I’m just a music lover, I’m a modest well travelled musician. I’m independent and not dependent on income from my concerts. Many of my friends and colleges would like to see music critics and reporters turn the page, and move forward in the most humanistic way, giving music a chance to flourish and to give a new chance for a fresh recharge. Mr. Lebrecht, people look up to you, they read the news, they are reading your thoughts and views for Music. As we all know, one word can kill or it can resurrect human being. I only wrote to you in my as you said “abusive” post, that the relatives of violinist Kwun had not only to live the tragedy of his passing, but also see their loved one being humiliated in front of all readers on Slippedisc. Now, why is that “abusive”, I don’t know, but I’m in despair that the general press today is give the right to distort any news in any way or any form and not be held responsible for it. Please remember, that you don’t play any instrument, at least professionally. If you did, you would surely feel differently about posting comments and opinions like you are doing. It does concern not only you, but the vast majority of press people who are so cool blooded. May I ask all of them, what were they doing when they were 3,4, 5 or 6 years old? Well, we are soloists, we practiced all day long sacrificing our childhood in the name of Music. Is there something wrong in what I’m saying? To be instrumentalist is unique, because unlike any other craft, we have to start our journey so early. Then, even if we become great and professional musicians, there is still no guarantee we can make it in our professional life. I’m very fortunate in my life to be independent in music and I can’t complain! But today the middle class of musicians is been totally illuminated!
    So, at least the humiliation of musicians has to be stoped once and for all!. That does not in any way attract new audience for the right reasons. All negative twists you are giving the news about Lang Land, Buniatishvili and others, all the corruptions at the opera companies, Orchestras – is all a product of modern society. Cassical Music should not be part of this mess. All musicians, big or small are just being used for money making machines, because today’s human values are diminished to the absolute nil! – here is the short answer to everyone, who is wondering as to why the classical music is in such crises. Music should stay out of politics, and the services of musicians has to be more rewarding. You, Mr. Lebrecht are in a privilege position to give the right people chances to express their views, so, their voices can be heard. There is a need for a big change in our small wonder world of Classical Music. My prayers go everyday, so, the justice can prevail over hatred and ignorance. Thanks for reading, best wishes Mark