The Hungarian-born violinist who taught in St Petersburg from 1868 to 1917 is generally acclaimed as the ‘father’ of the Russian school of violin playing.
But was he?
In a challenging new essay, the young violinist Yevgeny Chepovetsky, himself a student of an Auer-linear teacher, asks as uncomfortable question. Why is it that from 1868 to 1903 Auer did not produce a single star pupil?
From 1868 to 1903, Auer was completely unknown as a teacher beyond Russia’s border.
So what changed in 1903?
He met an 11-year-old child named Mischa Elman. It happened at one of those godforsaken outskirts of Russian Empire within a Jewish Pale of Settlement where Elmans lived for generations. Auer accepted the child into his class in St. Petersburg.
Sixteen months later Mischa made his sensational debut in Berlin, the most important musical city of that time. Elman started concertizing internationally right after, never returning to Auer’s class…
Read on here.