(14 May 1885 – 6 July 1973)
(July 6, 1937 - )
is a Russian-Icelandic conductor and pianist. Since 1972 he has been a citizen of Iceland, his wife Þórunn's country of birth. Since 1978, because of his many obligations in Europe, he and his family have resided in Meggen, near Lucerne in Switzerland. He is currently Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Ashkenazy was born in Gorky, Soviet Union (now Nizhny Novgorod, Russia) to the pianist and composer David Ashkenazi, and to the actress Yevstolia Grigorievna born Plotnova. His father was Jewish and his mother was the daughter of a family of Russian Orthodox peasants. He began playing piano at the age of six and, showing prodigious talent, was accepted to the Central Music School at age eight studying with Anaida Sumbatyan. Ashkenazy went on to graduate from the Moscow Conservatory where he studied with Lev Oborin and Boris Zemliansky, winning second prize in the International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw in 1955 and the first prize in the Queen Elisabeth Music Competition in Brussels in 1956. He shared the first prize in the 1962 International Tchaikovsky Competition with British pianist John Ogdon. As a student, like many in his time, he was harassed by the KGB to become an "informer". He did not really cooperate, and despite pressures from the authorities, in 1961 married the Iceland-born Þórunn Jóhannsdóttir, who studied piano at the Moscow Conservatory. In order to marry Ashkenazy, Þórunn was forced to give up her Icelandic citizenship and declare that she wanted to live in the USSR. After numerous bureaucratic procedures, the Soviet authorities several times agreed to the Ashkenazys to go to the West for musical performances and for visits to his parents-in-law with their first grandson, but in 1963 Ashkenazy decided to leave the USSR permanently, establishing residence first in London where his wife's parents lived. Ashkenazy moved to Iceland with his wife in 1968 and became an Icelandic citizen in 1972. In 1978, the couple, with five children (Vladimir Stefan, Nadia Liza, Dimitri Thor, Sonia Edda, and Alexandra Inga), moved to Switzerland.
Concerto for Piano no 2 in B flat major, Op. 83
Vladimir Ashkenazy, piano
New Philharmonia Orchestra
28.01.1969 (Live in Royal Festival Hall, London)
Запись мне прислал неделю назад мой постоянный американский поставщик редкостей...