Classical pianist set to perform at OUS

Published 9:22 pm Saturday, January 2, 2010

A classical concert pianist will be featured in Ohio University Southern’s Performing Arts Series next week.

Illya Filshtinskiy, a 23-year-old masters student at the Manhattan School of Music, will perform a free concert at the Riffe Center Mains Rotunda of Ohio University Southern at 7 p.m. Thursday.

Filshtinskiy is currently studying under Professor Arkady Aronov. He was awarded the Manhattan School of Music Scholarship. He completed his undergraduate studies at The Juilliard School, studying with the highly regarded Jerome Lowenthal and Julian Martin.  At Juilliard, he was awarded the Susan Rose and Vladimir Horowitz Scholarships, among others. 

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At the age of 6, Filshtinskiy began studying piano in his native Kharkov, Ukraine, and completed Music School in Kharkov in addition to his usual schooling before moving to America in 2000. He has performed in numerous cities, large and small, across the United States including New York, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Salt Lake City and Santa Barbara.

Filshtinskiy’s parents are Elena Filshtinska-Burwell and David Burwell. He is the grandson of Carolyn Burwell of Ironton.

Since 2007, Filshtinskiy has been part of a piano-violin duo with violinist Katha Zinn.  They have performed recitals in the United States, Canada, and the Netherlands.  As a duo, they have worked with Jerome Lowenthal, Vladislov Kovalsky, Lewis Kaplan, Gyorgy Pauk, and Mauricio Fuks.

In 2009, Filshtinskiy was invited to be a guest artist at Otterbein College where he presented a concert and a talk for the college’s music students and faculty, as well as presenting a public concert on the campus. He also performed in the Chi Mei Museum of the Chi Mei Cultural Foundation, Taiwan, that same year.

In 2008, Filshtinskiy was invited to perform in a contemporary music tour in Turkey, “East Meets West”. 

He performed in innovative settings and major concert venues throughout Turkey including Istanbul, Antalya, and Ismir, among others.  The tour included numerous television and radio appearances. 

In 2007, Filshtinskiy attended Arie Vardi’s International Summer Academy for Instrumentalists of Goslar, Germany, where he performed in master classes and solo recitals. 

In The Columbus Dispatch review of Filshtinskiy’s 2007 concert in the Cantilena Concert Series (which was later broadcast on the Columbus, Ohio PBS classical music station, WOSU), the reviewer wrote:

“Filshtinskiy demonstrates and impressive command of technique and an even more impressive command of interpretation.  He is willing to hold out a moment, to suspend listeners in time almost to the point of uneasiness, in order to make a musical point.  He is also willing to overwhelm a small space with sound, and to suddenly switch gears for a delicate, melodic passage.”

In 2005, Filshtinskiy was selected to participate in the prestigious Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California where he began his studies with Jerome Lowenthal.  The following summer, he attended Pianofest in the Hampton’s, studying with Paul Schenly, Yoheved Kaplinsky, Daniel Shapiro, and the distinguished artist Arie Vardi. 

In 2004, Filshtinskiy was named a Davidson Fellow, and was awarded a $10,000.00 fellowship by the Davidson Institute for Talent Development in recognition of his outstanding achievement in piano performance. That same year he was also invited to participate in a television interview concerning his achievements on the Columbus, Ohio NBC station.

Filshtinskiy made his New York debut in 2002 after winning Grand Prizes in the 2002 World Piano Competition, Young Artists level, for both concerto and solo performances.

As a result, he was invited to perform at New York’s Carnegie Hall and the United Nations Headquarters.

In December of 2002, Filshtinskiy made his orchestra debut performing the Schumann Piano Concerto with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra, having won that orchestra’s Young Soloist Competition earlier that year. This concert was broadcast on radio.

Filshtinskiy has also participated in the Bowdoin Summer Music Festival and the Orford Centre d’Arts. 

During these festivals, he worked with Yoheved Kaplinsky and Julian Martin, as well as renowned pianists Andre Laplante and John Perry.  He has been selected to attend the International Holland Music Sessions in Bergen, The Netherlands, the past three summers. There he studied with Arie Vardi, Boris Berman, and Jan Huizing.  As part of the Holland festival, he performed solo recitals in Bergen, Alkmaar, and Leeuwander. 

In response to his performance in Leeuwander, Illya was applauded by the Leeuwander Courant newspaper reviewer for: “present[ing] his Chopin with profundity and understanding. The courage of this pianist was demonstrated by his extroverted and priceless interpretation of Bolcom’s ‘The Serpent’s Kiss.’”