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Festival of Russian Music Kustendorf CLASSIC


Sixty two talented young people from Serbia, Republika Srpska and Russia were able to interact with one another, study with famous masters and, naturally, battle it out for the festival prizes. The best in the 18 to 25-year-olds’ programme was a Serbian accordionist quintet from eastern Sarajevo — Accordeus. The 13 to 17-year-olds’ category saw Svetlana Zvereva (St Petersburg), winning the Gold Matryoshka, pianist Yana Yakovlevich (Belgrade), winning the silver, and soprano Violetta Sabayeva (Omsk), receiving the bronze.

New “Dialogue of Talents” programme

Young musicians Alena Rostovskaya (soprano, Russia), Alex Mirkovich (accordion player, Serbia), Mina Radivojevic (soprano, Russia) Elizaveta Antonova (vocalist, Russia), Alexandra Latinovic (violinist, Serbia) and Vladislav Khandogiy (piano, Belarus), performed before festival guests in this year’s new “Dialogue of Talents” programme.

A masterclass with Valery Gergiev

An open masterclass by Valery Gergiev proved a surprise for festival guests and participants.

The Russian presence at the festival continues to grow, year on year, with 21 participants attending the fifth festival, from seven cities: Khanty-Mansiysk, Muravlenko, Omsk, Orenburg, St Petersburg, Tomsk and Tyumen.

Of those participants in the 18 to 25-year-olds’ programme, the best was a Serbian accordionist quintet from eastern Sarajevo — Accordeus, who received the gold award (the Golden Matryoshka), presented by Valery Gergiev, conductor and Artistic Director of the Mariinsky Theatre.

Every evening saw performances by famous musicians — including violinists Roman Simovic and Tatiana Samouil, mezzo-soprano Miliyany Nikolic, cellist Justus Grimm — with their performances accompanied by the Bolshoy Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of conductor Srbolyub Dinic.


Sixty five competitors — from Serbia, the Republika Srpska and Russia — took part in the fourth Bolshoy Festival of Russian Music. Russian participants represented a total seven cities, including Cape Kammeny, Khanty-Mansiysk, Muravlenko, Noyabrsk, Omsk, Orenburg, and Tomsk.

The festival jury

The international jury for the fourth festival was headed by People’s Artist of the Russian Federation and Moscow State Philharmonic soloist Yuri Rozum.

Russian competitors represented seven cities in total: Cape Kammeny, Khanty-Mansiysk, Muravlenko, Noyabrsk, Omsk, Orenburg, and Tomsk.

The official opening

The festival opened with a concert from the Bolshoy Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Srboljub Dinic, director of the Mexico City Opera, followed by a performance from renowned tenor Zoran Todorovic.

Other festival performers included:

Famous pianist and People’s Artist of the Russian Federation Yuri Rozym, and the young Armenian star and winner of the International Tchaikovsky Competition, cellist Narek Akhnazaryan. Violinist Nemanja Raduolovic closed the festival, together with the Double Sens ensemble.

A new feature of the fourth festival consisted of unique master classes for young musicians, led by Nemanja Radulovic, Zoran Todorovic, Narek Akhnazaryan, and Yuri Rozum.


More than 70 talented young people took part in the competition programme, with third place going to fifteen-year-old violinist Anastasia Chugaynova from Khanty-Mansiysk. Second place was awarded to Serbian vocal and instrumental ensembles, with the main prize of the festival — the Golden Matryoshka — going to pianist Leo Borislavlevich, a student at the Faculty of Music Arts, Belgrade.

The official opening

International competition winner pianist Yuri Rozum performed works by Russian composers.

The festival saw a début performance of young Russian performers representing music schools from Khanty-Mansiysk, Muravlenko, Noyabrsk, Omsk, Orenburg and Tomsk.

The world-famous Serbian violinist Nemanja Radulovic played a concert accompanied by the Belgrade Symphony Orchestra conducted by Srbolyub Dimic.

The world-famous Serbian violinist Nemanja Radulovic performed a concert, accompanied by the Belgrade Symphony Orchestra conducted by Srbolyub Dimic.


The second music festival opened with a concert by Denis Matsuev.

Ninety five contestants competed for festival prizes this year, with trio Assaha from the Academy of Music in Belgrade winning gold, Pavle Krstic, a student at the Isidor Bayich secondary school, Novi Sad, receiving the silver, and Vanya Chirkovich, from the Academy of Music in East Sarajevo, winning the Bronze Matryoshka.

Festival performers included

The Czech National Orchestra, performing the opera “Time of the Gypsies”, accompanied by the “No Smoking Orchestra”.

Denis Matsuev, one of the most outstanding pianists of the international music scene.

Film director Emir Kusturica and NIS CEO Kirill Kravchenko at the opening ceremony.


The festival was opened by film director Emir Kusturica, together with Kirill Kravchenko, Deputy CEO, Gazprom Neft, and CEO, NIS. The star of the festival was Russian pianist Yuri Rozum.

Performers on the festival programme included:

Divna Ljubojevic, together with the “Melody” choir and the “No Smoking Orchestra”, who performed the famous opera “Time of the Gypsies”.

Guest of honour

Special guests at the event included Italian actress Monica Bellucci.

Film director Emir Kusturica at the opening of the festival.

Festival performers included the Czech National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Jan Kucer.