This disc might well have been designed to illustrate the opening line of Wolf's Italian Songbook, ''Auch kleine Dinge One doesn't need to dwell on his flawless technique, his command of nuance, his tonal beauty or its variety, from gently tender in ''Bess, you is my woman now'' to ferocious in the ''Sabre dance'', his seeming spontaneity in a piece as familiar to him as the Hora staccato which he put on the map : there is stunning virtuosity in the Sarasate Zapateado ; and was the Wieniawski Scherzo-tarantelle ever thrown off at such a speed? Perhaps less realized by the public at large is his brilliant skill, inventiveness and ingenuity as an arranger—the Drigo ''Valse bluette'', a piece of trifling musical value, is transformed into a dazzling virtuoso showpiece and beyond the violinistic elaborations extensive double-stopping, octave work, harmonics, etc. Just occasionally he goes over the top: Wilhelmj's flowery arrangement of Schubert's Ave Maria is schmalzed up with big ritardandos all over the place; there is an over-sugary On wings of song with a horrible key-change to the second verse, though I'm not sure that that was Heifetz's doing ; and emotion slops over in La plus que lente , especially in some convulsive rubatos in its central section. But these are the exceptions: for the most part, taste is excellent.

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He was a virtuoso since childhood— Fritz Kreisler , another leading violinist of the twentieth century, said on hearing Heifetz's debut, "We might as well take our fiddles and break them across our knees. He had a long and successful performing career. However, after an injury to his right bowing arm, he switched his focus to teaching. Late in life, Heifetz became a dedicated teacher and a champion of socio-political causes. He publicly advocated to establish as an emergency phone number, and crusaded for clean air.

He and his students at the University of Southern California protested smog by wearing gas masks, and in he converted his Renault passenger car into an electric vehicle.

While Jascha was an infant, his father did a series of tests, observing how his son responded to his fiddling. This convinced him that Jascha had great potential, and before Jascha was two years old, his father bought him a small violin, and taught him bowing and simple fingering.

At four years old, he started lessons with Elias Malkin. He was a child prodigy , making his public debut at seven, in Kovno now Kaunas , Lithuania playing the Violin Concerto in E minor by Felix Mendelssohn. He played in Germany and Scandinavia, and met Fritz Kreisler for the first time in a Berlin private house, in a "private press matinee on May 20, Among other noted violinists in attendance was Fritz Kreisler.

After the year-old Heifetz performed the Mendelssohn violin concerto, Abell reported that Kreisler said to all present, 'We may as well break our fiddles across our knees. Heifetz visited much of Europe while still in his teens. In April , he performed in an outdoor concert in St.

Petersburg before 25, spectators; there was such a reaction that police officers needed to protect the young violinist after the concert. In , he performed with the Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Arthur Nikisch. The conductor said he had never heard such an excellent violinist.

Heifetz and his family left Russia in , traveling by rail to the Russian far east and then by ship to the United States, arriving in San Francisco. In , Heifetz was elected an honorary member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia , the national fraternity for men in music, by the fraternity's Alpha chapter at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. At 16, he was perhaps the youngest person ever elected to membership in the organization.

Heifetz remained in the country and became an American citizen in A story circulates that tells of an interaction with one of the Marx brothers : when he told the brother usually Groucho or Harpo that he had been earning his living as a musician since the age of seven, he received the reply, "Before that, I suppose, you were just a bum. In , Heifetz began working with pianist Brooks Smith, who was Heifetz's accompanist for many years until he changed to Ayke Agus as his accompanist.

After the seasons of —56, Heifetz announced that he would sharply curtail his concert activity, saying "I have been playing for a very long time.

He was invited to play Beethoven at the United Nations General Assembly, and entered leaning on a cane. By , Heifetz had considerably curtailed his concert performances. Virgil Thomson called Heifetz's style of playing "silk underwear music", a term he did not intend as a compliment.

Other critics argue that he infused his playing with feeling and reverence for the composer's intentions. His style of playing was highly influential in defining the way modern violinists approached the instrument. His use of rapid vibrato , emotionally charged portamento , fast tempi, and superb bow control coalesced to create a highly distinctive sound that makes Heifetz's playing instantly recognizable to aficionados.

Itzhak Perlman, who himself is noted for his rich warm tone and expressive use of portamento, described Heifetz's tone as like "a tornado" because of its emotional intensity. Perlman said that Heifetz preferred to record relatively close to the microphone—and as a result, one would perceive a somewhat different tone quality when listening to Heifetz during a concert hall performance.

Heifetz was very particular about his choice of strings. He used a silver wound Tricolore gut G string, plain unvarnished gut D and A strings, and a Goldbrokat medium steel E string, and employed clear Hill-brand rosin sparingly.

Heifetz believed that playing on gut strings was important in rendering an individual sound. Heifetz made his first recordings in Russia during —11, while still a student of Leopold Auer. On Oct. Heifetz often enjoyed playing chamber music. Various critics have blamed his limited success in chamber ensembles to the fact that his artistic personality tended to overwhelm his colleagues. Some notable collaborations include his recordings of piano trios by Beethoven, Schubert, and Brahms with cellist Emanuel Feuermann and pianist Arthur Rubinstein as well as a later collaboration with Rubinstein and cellist Gregor Piatigorsky , with whom he recorded trios by Maurice Ravel , Tchaikovsky , and Felix Mendelssohn.

Both formations were sometimes referred to as the Million Dollar Trio. Heifetz also recorded some string quintets with violinist Israel Baker , violists William Primrose and Virginia Majewski, and Piatigorsky. He performed and recorded Erich Wolfgang Korngold's Violin Concerto at a time when Korngold's scoring of numerous films for Warner Brothers prompted many classical musicians to develop the scarcely warranted opinion that Korngold was not a "serious" composer and to avoid his music in order to avoid being associated with him.

During the war, Heifetz commissioned a number of pieces, including the Violin Concerto by William Walton. Heifetz also played and composed for the piano. From to , largely as a result of the American Federation of Musicians recording ban which began in , Heifetz went to American Decca Records to make recordings because Decca settled with the union in , well before RCA Victor resolved their dispute with the musicians.

He recorded primarily short pieces, including his own arrangements of music by George Gershwin and Stephen Foster ; these were pieces he often played as encores in his recitals. He was accompanied on the piano by Emanuel Bay or Milton Kaye. Recorded mostly in small studios, the digitally remastered performances issued by MCA have remarkably clear, high fidelity sound.

Heifetz soon returned to RCA Victor, where he continued to make recordings until the early s. At the time, many considered Strauss and a number of other German intellectuals Nazis, or at least Nazi sympathizers, and Strauss works were unofficially banned in Israel along with those of Richard Wagner.

Despite the fact that the Holocaust had occurred less than ten years earlier and a last-minute plea from the Israeli Minister of Education, the defiant Heifetz argued, "The music is above these factors … I will not change my program.

I have the right to decide on my repertoire. Heifetz was attacked after his recital in Jerusalem outside his hotel by a young man who struck Heifetz's violin case with a crowbar, prompting Heifetz to use his bow-controlling right hand to protect his priceless violins.

The attacker escaped and was never found. The attack has since been attributed to the Kingdom of Israel terrorist group. Threats continued to come, however, and he omitted the Strauss from his next recital without explanation. His last concert was cancelled after his swollen right hand began to hurt.

He left Israel and did not return until The Soviet establishment considered Heifetz and his teacher Leopold Auer traitors to their home country for emigrating to the US. Meanwhile, musicians who remained, such as David Oistrakh , were seen as patriots.

Heifetz greatly criticized the Soviet regime, and condemned the International Tchaikovsky Competition for bias against Western competitors. During the Carl Flesch Competition in London, Oistrakh tried to persuade Erick Friedman , Heifetz's star student, to enter the Tchaikovsky Competition, of which he was the principal juror.

Hearing of this, Heifetz strongly advised against it, warning Friedman, "You will see what will happen there. Consequently, the competition received international outrage after Friedman, already a seasoned performer and RCA Victor recording artist, who had performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra , London Symphony Orchestra , and the Boston Symphony Orchestra , among many others, was placed sixth behind players who had yet to establish themselves.

Joseph Szigeti later informed Heifetz himself that he had given his student top scores. After an only partially successful operation on his right shoulder in , Heifetz ceased giving concerts and making records. His prowess as a performer remained, and he still played privately until the end—but his bow arm was affected, and he could never again hold the bow as high as before.

Heifetz taught the violin extensively, holding master classes first at UCLA , then at the University of Southern California , where the faculty included renowned cellist Gregor Piatigorsky and violist William Primrose.

For a few years in the s he also held classes in his private studio at home in Beverly Hills. His teaching studio can be seen today in the main building of the Colburn School and serves as an inspiration to the students there. During the last ten years of his life, Heifetz visited Hans Benning at Benning Violins for maintenance on his Guarneri violin.

The famed Guarneri is now in the San Francisco Legion of Honor Museum, as instructed by Heifetz in his will, and may only be taken out and played "on special occasions" by deserving players. The instrument has recently been on loan to San Francisco Symphony's concertmaster Alexander Barantschik , who featured it in with Andrei Gorbatenko and the San Francisco Academy Orchestra in Heifetz's son Jay is a professional photographer. He lives and works in Fremantle , Western Australia.

He later appeared in the film, Carnegie Hall , performing an abridged version of the first movement of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto , with the orchestra led by Fritz Reiner , and consoling the star of the picture, who had watched his performance.

In , he appeared in the film Of Men and Music. In , he appeared in a televised series of his master classes, and, in , Heifetz on Television aired, an hour-long color special that featured the violinist performing a series of short works, the Scottish Fantasy by Max Bruch , and the Chaconne from the Partita No. Heifetz conducted the orchestra, as the surviving video recording documents. It is described as "The only film biography of the world's most renowned violinist, featuring family home movies in Los Angeles and all over the world.

The documentary-like film talks about Heifetz's life and accomplishments and gives an inside view of his personal life. Jascha Heifetz was a prolific recording artist. All of his recordings have been reissued on compact disc. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Russian-American violinist. This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.

A Virtuoso Since Childhood". The New York Times. December 12, Retrieved October 25, The Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles. Retrieved May 21, — via Newspapers.

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Heifetz Plays Gershwin

Jascha Heifetz. Visit website. Jascha Heifetz, was born in Vilnius, Lithuania, which was then occupied by Russia, on February 2, He began playing the violin at the age of two, his first lessons from his father Ruvin, and entered the local music school in Vilna at the age of five. He made his first public appearance in a student recital there in December , and made his formal public debut at the age of eight in the nearby city of Kaunas then known as Kovno, Lithuania. With only brief sabbaticals, he performed in public for the next 65 years, establishing an unparalleled standard to which violinists around the world still aspire. A sold out audience packed the 1, seat hall.


GERSHWIN arr Heifetz: Three Preludes

Piano Accompaniment sheet music. Back To School. Score and part s. With Standard notation. Jascha Heifetz and George Gershwin , two of the best known figures in American music, were good friends and often played together.


Heifetz Collection - Gershwin & Encores

He was a virtuoso since childhood— Fritz Kreisler , another leading violinist of the twentieth century, said on hearing Heifetz's debut, "We might as well take our fiddles and break them across our knees. He had a long and successful performing career. However, after an injury to his right bowing arm, he switched his focus to teaching. Late in life, Heifetz became a dedicated teacher and a champion of socio-political causes. He publicly advocated to establish as an emergency phone number, and crusaded for clean air.




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