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Alexander Skwortsow

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Alexander Skwortsow, born in Novosibirsk, Siberia in 1944, began his musical studies as a not-so-enthusiastic piano student. His mother, a concert pianist, started teaching her son at the age of six, and for four years supervised his lessons and his practice. Then fate intervened.

In a short period of time two significant events occurred in the young artist’s life - he was in the audience of Novosibirsk’s Philharmonia Hall when a spirited gypsy group performed, and he heard the legendary violinist David Oistrakh.

“After that the piano sound was so dead” for the growing musician and he switched to the violin. His mother, who previously had to force him to practice his piano lessons, found herself asking her son “not to practice the violin so much”, however, she became a strong supporter of his new-found passion.

At the age of 10, Alexander Skwortsow entered Novosibirsk’s prestigious violin school, giving his first solo concert at age 16 with the Novosibirsk Philharmonic Orchestra (Wienawski’s 1st Violin Concerto and Vieuxtemps 4th). He twice obtained first prize in the national youth music competition for the entire U.S.S.R.

Skwortsow developed a strong interest in folk music and at age 19 he made an expedition to Russia’s northern provinces to tape those peoples’ music and transcribe it on paper. He felt that the music had to be written down or it would be lost forever.

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