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16 year old cellist Timur Rashkov wins third award prize and a bronze medal at the 9th International Youth Competition

Musical sign of quality

16 year old cellist Timur Rashkov wins third award prize and a bronze medal at the 9th International Youth Competition (named after P. Tchaikovsky). Lecturers of the Republican Musical Gymnasium-College — where the young musician studies — applaud the victory as recognition of the Belarusian cello school’s high level of expertise. Timur’s teacher and Honoured Artiste, Vlаdimir Perlin, says succinctly, “This is a great feat.”

Timur Rashkov with his teacher Vladimir Perlin

The major international music competition gathered participants from all over the world in Novosibirsk: 115 young performers represented 23 countries, including the post-Soviet region, Korea, the USA and Australia. The jury featured famous musicians and acclaimed cello players. The contestants demonstrated their supreme level of skill and even counted a Stradivarius among their instruments. 1,500 people came to enjoy their performance. 

In the second round, Timur played brilliantly and was awarded a place in the final. Mr. Perlin commented, “He played as never before! I was most anxious about his performance of the Bach suite for the solo cello; it takes at least 9 months to master it but Timur only began rehearsing it ten weeks ago. He played it wonderfully! As a result, he got through to the third round. The jury featured a People’s Artiste of Russia — cellist Maria Chaikovskaya, the famous Korean Heng Von Chang and laureates of the Tchaikovsky contest — Hungary’s Laszlo Mezo, Denis Shapovalov and Kirill Rodin; they were expected to write their immediate responses on the voting forms. We managed to bring my own instrument for Timur from Milano; there were just three days for him to get accustomed to it. We are also thankful to our concert master — Alexey Sobol who greatly contributed to the victory. Some participants struggled to show their best performances without their own concert masters.”

In turn, Timur added, “I doubted whether I should go for a long time. However, Vladimir believed in me, and made everything possible. Although the concert was organised at a high level, I was nervous. My mother accompanied me, supporting and encouraging me. I would not have succeeded without her.”

Timur’s parents are musicians and, some time ago, moved from Molodechno to Minsk for their son to have a chance to be taught by Vladimir. They view Timur’s success as a result of his teacher’s efforts. His mother — Rimma — believes Mr. Perlin is more than a mere teacher. “He is a musical guru and his word is a law — regarding music, behaviour and even what books should be read. We often attend classes and being musicians, learn much ourselves.”

Belarus has also been visited by another alumnus of Vladimir Perlin’s group: a laureate of the 1997 Tchaikovsky Competition — cellist Alexey Kiselev. He’s a soloist and a concert master at the Royal National Scottish Orchestra. He also congratulated Timur, advising him to continue in his career, “It’s a great achievement for any young musician to participate in this contest; it makes artistes stronger. The most difficult thing for Timur now is to develop further and build on his huge success here.” 

By Irina Ovsepyan

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