Olga Vinokur is a dynamic pianist who is gaining recognition for her impassioned performances and elegant musicianship. New York Times has described her playing as “the power of the music projected with clarity attests to the strength and consistency of her artistry.” Her career has taken her across the North America, Israel, Russia, England, France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, China, Czech Republic and Canada where she has performed as a soloist, chamber musician and with orchestra. Ms. Vinokur was the featured artist in the Young Artist Festival in Russia, Woodstock Mozart Festival in USA, Israeli “Music in Galilee” Radio Music Festival, Rolfs Piano Festival in Florida, USA, International Piano Festivals in Paris and Canary Islands of Spain. Ms. Vinokur participated in Tel-Hai International Piano Master-classes in Israel where she was awarded a prize in honor of Ada Caspi. Olga Vinokur is presented in the film documentary “Women of Music”, a classical music series on Bravo TV station,
which feature interviews and performances with today’s top classical performers from around the world.
She has been heard on WNYC’s “Soundcheck” with John Schaefer in New York, BBC in London, the Israeli “Voice of Music” radio station, Russian National Public Radio, WUWF in USA, Czech National Radio, CKWR radio station in Canada. Her performances have also been broadcast on Bronxnet TV station in New York.
Recently Ms Vinokur has toured in China as a soloist with Manhattan Symphonee Orchestra where she performed in major concert halls of 11 different cities. Other recent orchestral engagements include Prague Philharmonic Orchestra of the Czech Republic, Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra of Czech Republic, Manhattan Symphony Orchestra of New York, Salome Chamber Orchestra, Woodstock Mozart Festival Orchestra, La Primavera Chamber Orchestra of Russia, Sinfonietta of Pensacola.
Her solo CD was described by American Record Guide as “…comparisons with many of top pianists of the past 75 years. She stands up very well and also manages to say something new along the way…”
Ms. Vinokur has performed as a soloist and chamber musician at Weill Recital Hall of Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Hall, New York’s Town Hall and is a frequent performer at Bargemusic in New York where she played solo recitals and chamber concerts, which included the world premiers. She is a member of critically acclaimed Trio Vela. An avid chamber musician, she has also performed with distinguished St. Petersburg, Martinu, Primo quartets among others. Dedicated to new projects, Olga Vinokur is committed to performing the music of today. Known for adventurous and imaginative programming, she has premiered solo and chamber works collaborating with both established and emerging composers. New York Times wrote “She knows just how to handle composers who surf the line between a Romantic sensibility and a modern sound”.
A native of Russia, Olga Vinokur began her piano studies at the age of six, and at twelve was awarded First Prize in the National Young Artist Piano Competition in Russia. Since then she has been a recipient of numerous awards and prizes, including First-Prize in the Prokofiev Piano Competition in Russia and major prizes in the Torrefranka International Piano Competition in Italy, the Koussevitzky Piano Competition and Artist International in New York, and the Rubin Academy Competition in Israel among others. She has been an annual scholarship recipient of America-Israel Cultural Foundation.
Olga Vinokur began her studies in Russia. Moving to Israel, she received her Bachelor’s Degree and Artist’s Diploma with honors from the Rubin Academy of Music in Tel-Aviv University studying with Victor Derevianko and Natasha Tadson. She pursued her Master and Doctor of Musical Art Degrees at the Manhattan School of Music in New York under the tutelage of Solomon Mikowsky.
Pianist SVETLANA SMOLINA, born in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, has performed with orchestras and in recitals worldwide. Some recent notable solo appearances with orchestras include Mariinsky Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, New York Philharmonic at Avery Fischer, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Orchestra National de France, Odessa and Nizhny Novgorod Philharmonic, Pittsburgh Symphony, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Toledo Symphony, Florida Philharmonic, Shreveport Symphony, New York Chamber and many other ensembles. A frequent guest at festivals worldwide, Ms. Smolina has performed at the Salzburg Festival, Hollywood Bowl Festival in Los Angeles, Ravinia Rising Stars Festival in Chicago, White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg , Maggio Musicale in Florence, Mikkeli Festival, Ruhr Festival, Easter Festival in Moscow, Rotterdam Phillips Gergiev Festival in Holland, International Gilmore Keyboard Festival, Settimane Musicali di Stresa, Festivale di Bologna, Michelangeli Festival in Brescia, Hennessy Artists Series at Hanoi Opera House, Vietnam, festivals in Greece, Philadelphia International Festival, and many others.
As recitalist she performed in prestigious halls such as Royal Covent Garden Opera, Mariinsky 3 Concert Hall, Tchaikovsky Moscow Conservatory Hall, Kravis Center in West Palm Beach, Lincoln Theater in Miami, NJPAC Hall in New Jersey, Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon, Grand Artists Series in Tel-Aviv, Academia Santa Cecilia in Rome, Vienna’s Sacher Hall, and many others.
Recent recordings and broadcasts include Stravinsky’s Les Noces ( Valery Gergiev, conductor on Decca/Phillips and on Mariinsky Label which received ICMA award for Best Choral Work in 2011) , a recording of solo works for the Chopin Project, a recital with violinist Vadim Repin for Deutsche Grammophone in Berlin and many broadcasts for NPR, BBC, PBS, RAI, Cultura TV and other networks.
Dr. Smolina is DMA graduate from the University of Michigan, a recipient of “ New Names” Scholarship program in Russia and has been a prizewinner of many international competitions, including Citta di Senigalia International Piano Competition (Italy), Kingsville International Piano Competition, Wideman Piano Competition and the Murray Dranoff International Duo Piano Competition in Miami, Florida. Svetlana‘s principal teachers include Alexander Toradze, Arthur Greene, Natalia Fisch, Evgeny Mogilevsky, Monique Duphil. In the summer of 2011 Svetlana joined iPalpiti Festival of International Laureates in Los Angeles, making her debut at Walt Disney Concert Hall with iPalpiti Orchestra (Eduard Schmieder, conductor) and in solo and chamber concerts, won Beverly Hills Auditions and worked as piano faculty at Philadelphia International Summer Festival and collaborative faculty at Mozarteum Summer Academy.
Highlights of 2012 included recital on Horowitz Steinway at Steinway, DE and for the Crossover Show at WRTI–FM in Philadelphia, NYC recitals at Rotunda Hall at 57th St. Steinway and Merkin Hall, and summer festivals appearances at Philadelphia International Music Festival, iPalpiti International Laureates Festival in Los Angeles, and Summit Festival in New York.
During 2013 season Svetlana will play series of recitals in San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange County in CA , at Tri-County Emerging Artist Concert Series, at WRTI-FM Radio Station, Live Connections Series at World Cafe Live ! in Philadelphia, Powell Concert Series in Tennessee, and as soloist with Nizhny Novgorod and Kostroma Philharmonics in Russia, and orchestras in Pennsylvania.
As of Fall 2011, Svetlana Smolina was appointed as the Samuel Barber Artist -In-Residence at West Chester University of Pennsylvania's School of Music in The College of Visual and Performing Arts.