Vio Lin wins Indy

Vio Lin wins Indy


norman lebrecht

September 16, 2018

The Juilliard violinist Richard Lin, who styles himself Vio Lin, won the the 10th Quadrennial International Violin Competition of Indianapolis last night.

Lin, from Taiwan, is 27.

Second was Risa Hokamura, 17, from Japan.

Third was Luke Hsu, 28, from the US.


  • Brinton Smith says:

    I wouldn’t say Richard styles himself “Richard Vio Lin” it’s just a bit of a humorous name on facebook. Richard is the real deal, fantastic technique, great personality in his playing but also so much of what is best from the golden age of the violin. Class, elegance, beauty, sound, slides! Richard breathes new life into the old school (and speaking of Curtis, he studied with Rosand there) Bravo, Indianapolis!

  • David K. Nelson says:

    There was a successful violinist named, or who called himself, “Mischa Violin” back in the 78 rpm era. He seemed to end up being a session player, perhaps also active in film studio orchestras (?), but recorded some obligato passages that revealed him to be a very nice player – and clearly not Mischa Elman playing under an assumed name.

    • John Marks says:

      Could that have been Mishel Piastro? From German Wiki, translated by Googletrans:

      Mishel Piastro (also: Michel Piastro, born June 19, 1891 in Kerch, † April 10, 1970 in New York City) was an American violinist and conductor of Russian origin.

      Piastro had the first violin lessons with his father, a pupil of Leopold von Auer and studied from 1906 to 1911 at the Conservatory of St. Petersburg even with Auer. He then undertook concert tours through Russia and was a solo violinist with the Riga Symphony Orchestra. After further tours u. a. he made his debut in Shanghai and Canada in 1920 at New York’s Carnegie Hall.

      From 1925 to 1931 he was concertmaster of the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra under Alfred Hertz. In 1931 he moved to the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, to which he belonged until 1943. There he was under Arturo Toscanini concertmaster and from 1941 assistant to John Barbirolli. As a result, he became the conductor of the Longines Symphonette, a classic radio program that he continued to hold in 1943, following his release from the New York Philharmonic, with its new musical director, Artur Rodziński, until the late 1940s.

      Also in the 1950s and 1960s Piastro devoted himself mainly to conducting. He also gave violin lessons. His students included u. a. Sidney Harth and Albert Steinberg.

      # # #

      My own violin teacher said that Piastro had an amazingly sweet tone.

      john marks

      • David K. Nelson says:

        An interesting speculation which I cannot rule out, but I suspect Piastro would have recorded under his own name since some of the Mischa Violin recordings are with respected artists such as Rosa Ponselle.
        My own teacher also studied briefly with Piastro – knowing he had studied with Auer, my teacher selected the Tchaikovsky and Glazunov Concertos for those lessons.

        I have checked and yes there are youtube recordings from both Piastro and Mischa Violin. Both are estimable artists. Tones are not unalike – hot vibratos. But I do think they are different players.

  • Bill says:

    Notice how Norman rants about the fix being in when a competition is won by the student of the jury president, but when the next time around, the winner isn’t a student of anyone on the jury, there’s not a peep about it? No praise for cleaning up the alleged misdeeds. (I don’t believe the fix was in in any running of the IVCI, but that’s not the point).

    My mother used to say “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I think someone else’s mother said “if you can’t say something that will get you a bunch of page views…”