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Double firsts

At this year’s quadrennial International Tchaikovsky Competition, the judges awarded the $30,000 first prize in both the violin and cello categories. Tim Homfray attended the violin section in Moscow, while Andrew Mellor visited St Petersburg to hear the cellists - and both were impressed by what they saw

Can it really be four years since the last International Tchaikovsky Competition, when I listened to six cellists in three days play his Rococo Variations in St Petersburg? Yes it is, and here I am again, this time in Moscow, to hear the composer’s Violin Concerto six times in three days of finals.

First, though, I was asked to do a mini interview about the competition for the Ukrainian TV channel Kultura. The fact that I hadn’t heard anything yet was not considered an obstacle. I then proceeded to the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall for the first night of the final round (25 June). This is a splendid hall, and very white.

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About The Strad

We mark 100 years of Elgar’s Cello Concerto and examine Sgarabotto’s violins. Plus interviews Boris Kuschnir, Daniel Müller-Schott and Richard Tognetti, and our annual Cremona supplement.