The Verbier Festival approaches its first decade celebrationAlmost 20% of the Orchestra are musicians from Russia and other former Soviet Republics. "It is an incredible chance for me to take part at the Youth Orchestra," Svetlana Makarova, violinist, the student of Moscow State Conservatory says, "you are given time and experience to work with the great musicians from all over the world, and I have a little dream to stay longer with the Orchestra, hopefully more than a year."
Russia is represented mostly by The Tchaikovsky Moscow State Conservatory and The Rimsky - Korsakov St.Petersburg State Conservatory.
An impressive roster of international conductors have directed the Orchestra in its first years, including Yuri Temirkanov, Mstislav Rostropovich, Lawrence Foster, Paavo Jarvi and Kent Nagano.
As players are successfully invited and appointed to the best world orchestra's regular auditions try to select new talents around the world. Some 1350
applicants from 67 different countries were auditioned in February and March this year but eventually only 119 have got an opportunity to play in the UBS Verbier Festival Youth Orchestra.
At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in January 2003, the Orchestra gave a memorable concert with James Levine for all attending delegates.
In addition the young musicians see playing at the festival and then touring with the Orchestra - this autumn a few European and for the first time Asian countries will be visited including Russia (there will be only one concert at Bolshoi Conservatory in Moscow in October 2003).
The Orchestra is going to Moscow for the first time and also it will be a conducting debut of James Levine in Russia. It's a unique event for Russian classic music lovers to plunge into the ocean of feelings and emotions, which the classic music brings to everyone's heart.
The festival is also about showcasing new talents, like the Chinese pianist Lang Lang, a 20-year-old with an impressive technique, who opened the concert of the 300-years anniversary in St.Petersburg, and like the British 13 year old, Clarinettist Julian Bliss who is steadily growing into a big world star.
This year, several of the world's most celebrated musicians - Martha Argerich, Evgeny Kissin, Yuri Bashmet, Misha Maisky and Mikhail Pletnev - gave successful concerts in Verbier.
Verbier works on many different levels, for the audience it is the pleasure in watching performances of the great symphonies from the young musicians, for the musicians it is a relaxing atmosphere and a unique chance to meet many friends and colleagues at one place, for the students it is a good opportunity for the guests and first visitors of Verbier it is a falling in love with the Festival, music and nature.