In mid-January, the European Foundation for Support of Culture, with media support of the “Valletta 2018” Foundation and the Malta Tourism Authority, launched a project entitled “Malta – the new centre of tourism and classical music attraction”, which was held in the format of a presentation concert at European conservatories and to which all interested students were invited.
As part of the project in St. Petersburg, a presentation concert took place on 7 February at the Rimsky-Korsakov St. Petersburg State Conservatory, Russia. The students had a unique opportunity to get to know Malta, learn about the activities of the European Foundation for Support of Culture and its educational projects, as well as international piano, violin and wind competitions for young talents.
The Rimsky-Korsakov St. Petersburg State Conservatory is a higher musical education institution and the oldest conservatory in Russia.
The main initiator of establishing the Conservatory’s in 1861 was Anton Rubinstein, who also became its first artistic director and first professor of piano. Among the teachers who taught at the Conservatory in its early years were Anton Rubinstein, Theodor Leschetizky (piano), Henryk Wieniawski and Leopold Auer (violin), Karl Davydov (cello), Cesare Ciardi (flute), Ernesto Cavallini (clarinet), Nikolai Zaremba (music theory), Giovanni Ferrero (double bass), Albert Zabel (harp), and other outstanding musicians.
The Conservatory’s first graduate in the class of composition was Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, who graduated in 1865 with a big silver medal. Other famous graduates include composers Dmitry Shostakovich, Sergey Prokofiev, Sergey Rachmaninoff, and Anatoly Lyadov, conductor Valery Gergiev, artistic director and general director of the Mariinsky Theatre, chief conductor of the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, legendary pianist Grigory Sokolov, and many others.
The presentation concluded with a performance by violinist Karen Shakhgaldyan, laureate of Pablo Sarasate International Violin Competition, and young pianist Ruben Kozin, laureate of the Eurasian Music Games, who together played popular works by Maltese composers.