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11th Karl Davidov International Cello Competition

The 11th edition of the Karl Davidov International Cello Competition will be held in the beautiful city of Kuldiga, in Latvia. The application is open until February 3, while the Competition will be from April 25 to May 2, 2021.

Young cellists and cello students from all over the world are admitted to the registration and divided into four age groups, with a maximum limit of 29 years. The registration form, the rules and the program of the Competition are available on the official website.

The competition takes place in Kuldiga, the birthplace of the famous cellist Karl Davidov (1838-1889). The competition is in fact organized to remember the famous musician but above all to promote and encourage the professional and artistic growth of young cellists.

Karl Julevich Davydov (sometimes transliterated also as Davidoff or Davidov) was a Russian composer, cellist, and teacher. Son of a doctor, he was the brother of August Davydov, a well-known mathematician, and teacher. He learned to play the piano at the age of 5 and the cello at the age of 12 under the guidance of maestro Heinrich Schmidt, then the first cello of the Moscow theater. After studying mathematics at the University of St. Petersburg, he studied cello with Moritz Hauptmann at the Conservatory of Leipzig. He was successful as a cellist from a very young age. He taught initially at the Conservatory of Leipzig and later in St. Petersburg with the same assignment as well as with the role of director of the Russian Music Society. His works include many important compositions for cello. For example Fantasie on a Russian folk song for Cello and Orchestra, op.7 (1860) and Cello Concerto No.2 in A minor, op.14 (1863). Davydov was firmly convinced that the cello technique should be inspired by that of the violin and advised his students to observe and study the best violinists very carefully. He made improvements to the cello technique and, under the influence of Hauptmann, was one of the first cellists to consider the anatomical and physiological aspects of performance. The cello Stradivari “Davidov” took its name from him. It was a very famous cello, played in the past by Jacqueline du Pré and still by Yo-Yo Ma

All three rounds of the 11th Karl Davidov International Cello Competition will take place at the Ernests Vigners Music School in Kuldiga. Kuldīga (in German Goldingen) is a town in Latvia belonging to the historical region of Curland and has about 10,000 inhabitants. It was once a member of Hansa, the alliance of cities that have controlled trade in Northern Europe since the 14th century. The city has been preserved in its natural beauty to the present day.

The competition will be chaired by an international jury of five members:
Eleonora Testeleca: head of the jury and founder of the Competition, professor at the Jazeps Vitols Music Academy of Latvia.
Stefan Popov: professor at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama
Nicholas Jones: head of Archi at Chetham’s School of Music and professor at Royal Northern College of Music
Kristina Blaumane: first cello at the London Philharmonic Orchestra
Kristaps Bergs: first cello at the Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra

All participants in the competition will perform in the final gala concert and the laureates will have the opportunity to perform together with the Symphony Orchestra. Furthermore, competitors will be able to participate in masterclasses dedicated to the instrument.

For any information contact Agnese Lapsiņa, Project Manager of the Competition:
e-mail: agnese.lapsina@kuldiga.lv
+ Tel. 00 371 27091623
or consult the official website of the Competition: http://davidovcello.kuldiga.lv/