Kiev Chamber Orchestra | Orchestra
The Kiev Chamber Orchestra was created in 1963 by the well-known violinist and conductor Anton Sharoev in the structure of the former "Ukrconcert".
They immediately won recognition from the Kiev public, began to tour through cities of Ukraine and in all the republics of the former USSR. The orchestra became one of the best chamber ensembles on the territory of the former Union. The concerts of the orchestra in the Great Hall of the Tchaikovskiy Moscow State Conservatory, the Great Hall of the Leningrad Philharmonic, Riga Domsky Cathedral became unforgettable. Anton Sharoev headed the orchestra from 1963 to 1969. After his work in Moscow he came back to the ensemble and worked with it from 1976 to 1987. In 1972 the Kiev Chamber Orchestra was included in the creative staff of the Kiev State Philharmonic. The collaboration with the conductor Igor Blazhkov during the years 1969-1978 became a bright period in the orchestra creative activity. A musician of encyclopaedic knowledge, real researcher of music, Igor Blazhkov created interesting programs, acquainted the Kiev public with genius works of the chamber genre by I.Stravinsky, V.Silvestrov, E.Stankovych. Actually every concert of the Kiev Chamber Orchestra under Igor Blazhkov was a premiere of modern works, and also of unknown works of ancient music. In spite of that period difficulties, the Kiev Chamber Orchestra was one of not many ensembles of classic music, which toured outside USSR. In 70th, the orchestra was on tours in North Korea, became a participant of the famous festival "Prague Spring" in Czechoslovakia. Many records for the Ukrainian and Central Radio and Television were done. The Soviet firm "Melody" released several plates with the orchestra records, among which there were an unique record of the Haydn's "Mass in Tempori Belli" (together with the Kiev Chamber Choir), a record of the Chamber symphony and Symphony "Poetry" by E.Stankovych under Anton Sharoev; "Variations on the Franc Bridge's theme" by Britten, chamber works of D.Shostakovych under Igor Blazhkov.
In 1987 Ukrainian known violinist, Honoured Artist of Ukraine Arkadiy Vinokurov became the head of orchestra. With him, two compact discs with works of Handel, Tchaikovskiy, and Grieg were recorded. The orchestra carried out an effective tour activity not only in capitals and cities of the republics of the former Soviet Union, but also in the most distant quarters, where the listeners first met with art of chamber music performance. Special programs were developed - so called lecture concerts, in which not only musicologists, but also the conductor and musicians participated.
In 1991 Arkadiy Vinokurov became a professor of the Vienna Higher Musical Academy, and Roman Kofman, which worked as violinist in the first composition of the orchestra, was invited by the Philharmonic Management to lead it.
In 1961 Roman Kofman graduated from the Tchaikovskiy Kiev Conservatory with a degree in violin, followed by degree in conducting in 1971. During the long and interesting career, he was frequently invited to conduct the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra and Philharmonic Orchestra in Saint Petersburg (Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra). Kofman also has been conducting other known orchestras, among which there were the USSR Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra, Ukrainian State Symphonic Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, Symphonic orchestra of the Finnish radio, Philharmonic orchestra of the French radio, National Symphonic Orchestra of Belgium.
Since gaining its independence by Ukraine in 1991, the tour geography of the Kiev Chamber Orchestra has broadened essentially. The orchestra under Roman Kofman has presented the Ukrainian musical art in France, Netherlands, South Korea, Germany, Belgium, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Great Britain, Austria, Mexico, Poland, Slovakia, Japan, USA. Authoritative American newspaper "The Washington Post" wrote enthusiastically about the tours of the Ukrainian ensemble: "Kiev Orchestra, rare delights. Conductor Roman Kofman and his orchestra gave the kind of performance that lives long in one's memory." "Exemplary culture of playing - to encore!" In such a way the newspaper "North-Bavarian Courier" published in Bayreuth - the hometown of Wagner, named a review on a concert of the Kiev Chamber Orchestra. It wrote: "There are performers, in which concert one is not in need of looking in the program to know beforehand that the visit to their concert will justify one's hopes. Kiev Chamber Orchestra is such a performer".
A notable event of the 134th concert season of the National Philharmonic of Ukraine was the cycle "Roman Kofman and His Friends". It was a real festival with prominent artists from different countries of Europe that came into notice of the lovers of classic music. Outstanding masters of the musical Olympus took part in this peculiar festival: Nataliya Gutman, Vladimir Krainev, Gidon Kremer, Liana Isakadze, Erik Kurmangaliev, Makvala Kasrashvili, Aleksey Liubimov, Sergey Stadler, Naum Shtarkman, Boris Pergamenshchikov, Viktoriya Luk'yanets. Many from the above-mentioned soloists participated in the great musical festival "Grands of the Art" in the city of Lviv, where the Kiev Chamber Orchestra was the base ensemble during the season 1998-1999.
Since September 2003, Roman Kofman has been appointed as a musical director of the city of Bonn (Germany), where he conducts the Opera and Symphonic orchestras of the Beethoven's city. But the collaboration of Roman Kofman with the Kiev Chamber Orchestra continues pleasuring the Ukrainian and foreign audiences.
"Kiev Orchestra, rare delights. Conductor Roman Kofman and his orchestra gave the kind of performance that lives long in one's memory"
The Washington Post, USA
"Das Kiev Chamber Orchestra strahlt eine Eigenschaft aus, die aufhorchen lässt: ein heller, spritziger Klang, agil, mit pikanter Akzentuierung der rhythmischen Strukturen - fast wie geschaffen für all die Effektmöglichkeiten von Brittens frühem Viersätzer. Zu diesem zugriffigen, nie unnötig pastosen Streicherklang fügt sich Franziska Hirzels Sopranstimme imponierend: Mit untadeliger französischer Diktion gibt sie Rimbauds Gedichte in Brittens «Les Illuminations» op. 18 wieder. «Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge» op. 10 sind mit ihren parodierenden Momenten heitere Musik zum Schmunzeln - und genial, wie die elfteilige Folge in Fugue and Finale sich schliesslich dynamisch zurücknimmt zu einer klingenden Sternennacht im Pianissimo."
Rolf Urs Ringger
1. Dezember 2005, Neue Zürcher Zeitung
Les Illuminations Op. 18
Simple Symphony Op. 4
Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge Op. 10
Franziska Hirzel, soprano
Kiev Chamber Orchestra
Quartet D 810
Death and the Maiden
Kiev Chamber Orchestra
Ludwig van Beethoven
Galina Vracheva, Klavier
Kiev Chamber Orchestra
Roman Kofman, Leitung