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David Fedorovich Oistrakh

OISTRAKH, DAVID FEDOROVICH (1908–1974), Russian violin virtuoso. Born in Odessa, Oistrakh studied the violin from the age of five with *Stoljarsky, made his first public appearance in 1914, and attended the Institute of Music and Drama in Odessa, 1923–26. After winning other prizes he gained international attention when he won the first prize at the Queen Elizabeth competition in Brussels in 1937. Attached to the Moscow Conservatory, he became professor in 1939 and head of the violin department in 1950. On his subsequent world tours he performed in Paris and London in 1953, in the U.S. in 1955, and was acknowledged everywhere as a master. From 1961 he also appeared as a conductor. Foremost Soviet composers (Prokofiev, Miaskovsky, Shostakovich, Khachaturian) wrote violin works for him, and he received many Soviet awards. His son IGOR OISTRAKH (1931– ), also a violinist, studied with his father at the Moscow Conservatory (1949–55). Winner of the International Festival of Democratic Youth in Budapest (1949) and the Wieniawski International Contest in 1952, he became a teacher of violin at Moscow Conservatory in 1958, and often appeared in duets with his father.


Baker, Biog Dict; MGG; Riemann-Gurlitt; V. Bronin, David Oystrakh (Rus., 1954); D. Oistrakh, in: Sovetskaya Muzyka, 22:9 (1958), 98–105.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.