David Oistrakh

Biography

Born: September 30, 1908; Russia   Died: October 24, 1974; Netherlands  
David Oistrakh is considered the premiere violinist of the mid-twentieth century Soviet Union. His recorded legacy includes nearly the entire standard violin repertory up to and including Prokofiev and Bartók. Oistrakh's violin studies began in 1913 with the famed teacher Pyotr Stolyarsky. Later he officially joined Stolyarsky's class at the Odessa Conservatory, graduating in 1926 by playing Prokofiev's First Violin Concerto. Performances of the Read more Glazunov Concerto in Odessa and Kiev in 1927, and a 1928 debut in Leningrad (Tchaikovsky Concerto) gave Oistrakh the confidence to move to Moscow. He made his premiere there in early 1929, but the event went largely unnoticed. In 1934, however, after several years of patiently refining his craft, Oistrakh was invited to join the Moscow Conservatory, eventually rising to the rank of full professor in 1939.

Meanwhile, Oistrakh was gaining success on the competition circuit, winning the All-Ukrainian contest in 1930, and the All-Soviet competition three years later. In 1935 he took second prize at the Wieniawski competition. In 1937 the Soviet government sent the now veteran violinist to Brussels to compete in the International Ysaÿe Competition, where he took home first prize.

With his victory in Brussels, Soviet composers began to take notice of their young compatriot, enabling Oistrakh to work closely with Miaskovsky and Khachaturian on their concertos in 1939 and 1940, respectively. In addition, his close friendship with Shostakovich led the composer to write two concertos for the instrument (the first of which Oistrakh played at his, and its, triumphant American premiere in 1955). During the 1940s Oistrakh's active performing schedule took him across the Soviet Union but his international career had to wait until the 1950s, when the political climate had cooled enough for Soviet artists to be welcomed in the capitals of the West.

The remaining decades of Oistrakh's life were devoted to maintaining the highest possible standards of excellence throughout an exhausting touring schedule (he returned to the U.S. six times in the 1960s), and he began a small but successful sideline career as an orchestral conductor. His death came suddenly in Amsterdam in 1974, during a cycle of Brahms concerts in which he both played and conducted. Oistrakh's unexpected death left a void in the Soviet musical world which was never really filled.

Throughout his career David Oistrakh was known for his honest, warm personality; he developed close friendships with many of the leading musicians of the day. His violin technique was virtually flawless, though he never allowed purely physical matters to dominate his musical performances. He always demanded of himself (and his students) that musical proficiency, intelligence, and emotion be in balance, regardless of the particular style. Oistrakh felt that a violinist's essence was communicated through clever and subtle use of the bow, and not through overly expressive use of vibrato. To this end he developed a remarkably relaxed, flexible right arm technique, capable of producing the most delicate expressive nuances, but equally capable of generating great volume and projection.

As a teacher, David Oistrakh maintained that a teacher should do no more than necessary to help guide the student towards his or her own solutions to technical and interpretive difficulties. He rarely played during lessons, fearing that he might distract the student from developing a more individual approach, and even encouraged his students to challenge his interpretations. Perhaps the best evidence of the Oistrakh's gift for teaching is that he felt that he gained as much from the teaching experience as his students did. Read less
David Oistrakh - Remembering A Musician
Release Date: 03/25/2008   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 1130   Number of Discs: 1
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David Oistrakh - Artist Of The People?
Release Date: 10/28/2008   Label: Juxtapositions  
Catalog: 3073178   Number of Discs: 1
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Bach, Mozart, Brahms: Violin Concertos / David Oistrakh
Release Date: 02/22/2011   Label: Ica Classics  
Catalog: 5012   Number of Discs: 1
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Browse 101-125 of 162 Available Recordings
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  • 101.
    Karajan Collection - Beethoven: Piano Concerto No 4, Triple Concerto / Weissenberg, Richter, Rostropovich, Oistrakh
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 4768862 Release Date: 08/16/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Alexis Weissenberg,  Mstislav Rostropovich,  David Oistrakh,  Sviatoslav Richter
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 102.
    Legendary Treasures - David Oistrakh Vol 12 - Piano Trios
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 7820 Release Date: 07/12/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Bedrich Smetana,  Arno Babadjanyan
    Performer:  Sviatoslav Knushevitzky,  David Oistrakh,  Lev Oborin,  Arno Babadjanyan
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  • 103.
    Dvorak, Glazunov, Kabalevsky / Oistrakh, Kondrashin, Et Al
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 90665 Release Date: 05/31/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Alexander Glazunov,  Dmitri Kabalevsky
    Performer:  David Oistrakh
    Conductor:  Kiril Kondrashin,  Dmitri Kabalevsky
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  USSR State Symphony Orchestra
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  • 104.
    Mozart, Beethoven, Etc / Oistrakh, Golovanov, Moscow Rso
    Label: Archipel   Catalog: 306 Release Date: 05/31/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Tommaso Antonio Vitali,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Vladimir Yampolsky,  Vladimir Knushevitsky,  Lev Oborin
    Conductor:  Nikolai S. Golovanov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 105.
    Great Concertos - Great Artists Vol I - The Violin
    Label: Pearl   Catalog: 219 Release Date: 03/22/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Bruch,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Aram Khachaturian,  Sir Edward Elgar  ... 
    Performer:  Nathan Milstein,  Ruggiero Ricci,  David Oistrakh,  Jascha Heifetz  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli,  Sir Malcolm Sargent,  Alexander Gauk,  William Steinberg  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic,  New Symphony Orchestra,  USSR State Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 106.
    Prokofiev: Violin Concertos 1 & 2 / David Oistrakh
    Label: Emi Great Recordings Of The Century   Catalog: 62889 Release Date: 09/07/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Vladimir Yampolsky
    Conductor:  Lovro von Matacic,  Alceo Galliera
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 107.
    The Devil's Trill - Showpieces / Oistrakh, Yampolsky
    Label: Emi Great Recordings Of The Century   Catalog: 62915 Release Date: 09/07/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Tartini,  Claude Debussy,  Manuel de Falla,  Eugène Ysaÿe  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Yampolsky,  David Oistrakh
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  • 108.
    Beethoven: Symphony No. 5; Piano Concerto No. 4; Violin Romance No. 2 / Ancerl, Palenicek, Oistrakh,
    Label: Supraphon   Catalog: 3685 Release Date: 05/25/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Josef Pálenícek,  David Oistrakh
    Conductor:  Karel Ancerl
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  • 109.
    Oistrakh, Menuhin, Rostropovich - Bach, Mozart, Brahms: Concertos
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 90450 Release Date: 02/10/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Igor Oistrakh,  David Oistrakh,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Mstislav Rostropovich
    Conductor:  Yehudi Menuhin,  Pierre Capdevielle,  Kiril Kondrashin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra,  ORTF National Orchestra
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  • 110.
    Original Masters - The Singles
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000141802 Release Date: 11/11/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Anonymous,  Federico Moreno-Torroba,  Traditional,  Modest Mussorgsky  ... 
    Performer:  Andrés Segovia,  Kim Borg,  Erik Werba,  Andor Foldes  ... 
    Conductor:  Serge Jaroff,  Helmut Zacharias,  Paul Strauss,  Ferenc Fricsay  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Don Kossack Choir,  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Végh String Quartet  ... 
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  • 111.
    Legendary Treasures - Oistrakh Collection Vol 11 - Beethoven
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 7807 Release Date: 11/04/2003   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Lev Oborin,  David Oistrakh
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  • 112.
    Brahms: Violin Concerto, Etc / Oistrakh, Szell, Et Al
    Label: Emi Great Recordings Of The Century   Catalog: 67974 Release Date: 04/08/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Vladimir Yampolsky,  David Oistrakh
    Conductor:  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
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  • 113.
    Warsaw Philharmonic Archive - Szymanowski, Brahms / Oistrakh
    Label: Cd Accord   Catalog: 118 Release Date: 03/25/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Karol Szymanowski,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  David Oistrakh
    Conductor:  Karol Stryja,  Witold Rowicki
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 114.
    The Violin Of David Oistrakh - Stradivari
    Label: Dynamic   Catalog: 389 Release Date: 10/29/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Fritz Kreisler,  George Enescu,  Antonín Dvorák,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Mariana Sirbu,  Mihail Sarbu,  Enrica Cavallo,  Franco Gulli  ... 
    Conductor:  Otmar Nussio
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana
    CD: $27.49
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  • 115.
    For Your Life - For Your Dreams
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 472477 Release Date: 09/24/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Robert Schumann,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Jean-Baptiste Lully  ... 
    Performer:  Jean-Yves Thibaudet,  Mischa Maisky,  Pavel Gililov,  Maria Graf  ... 
    Conductor:  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Sir Neville Marriner,  Richard Bonynge,  Leopold Stokowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Monte Carlo Opera Orchestra  ... 
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  • 116.
    Beethoven/Brahams/Schubert
    Label: Angel Records   Catalog: 69367 Release Date: 09/10/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Zoltán Kodály,  Josef Suk,  Henri Wieniawski,  Eugène Ysaÿe  ... 
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Vladimir Yampolsky,  Anton Ginzburg,  Igor Oistrakh  ... 
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  • 117.
    Brahms: Violin Concerto; Mozart / Oistrakh, Klemperer
    Label: Emi Classics Encore   Catalog: 74724 Release Date: 08/13/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Igor Oistrakh
    Conductor:  Otto Klemperer,  David Oistrakh
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  French National Radio Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 118.
    Mozart: Violin Concertos 1-3 / Oistrakh, Berlin Philharmonic
    Label: Emi Classics Encore   Catalog: 74743 Release Date: 08/13/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  David Oistrakh
    Conductor:  David Oistrakh
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 119.
    Mozart: Violin Concertos No 4 & 5, Etc / Oistrakh, Berlin Po
    Label: Emi Classics Encore   Catalog: 74744 Release Date: 08/13/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  David Oistrakh
    Conductor:  David Oistrakh
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 120.
    Great Violinists - Bell Telephone Hour 1959-1964
    Label: Video Artists International   Catalog: 4215 Release Date: 06/25/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gabriel Fauré,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Niccolò Paganini  ... 
    Performer:  Gregor Piatigorsky,  Ruggiero Ricci,  David Oistrakh,  Igor Oistrakh  ... 
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  • 121.
    Beethoven: Sonatas For Piano And Violin / Oistrakh, Oborin
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 468406 Release Date: 10/09/2001   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Lev Oborin
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  • 122.
    Legendary Treasures - David Oistrakh Collection Vol 9
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 7790 Release Date: 08/21/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Sviatoslav Knushevitzky,  Lev Oborin,  David Oistrakh,  Vladimir Yampolsky  ... 
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  • 123.
    Virtuoso Violin - Kreisler, Paganini, Et Al / Kremer, Et Al
    Label: Dg Panorama   Catalog: 469235 Release Date: 01/23/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Niccolò Paganini,  Maurice Ravel,  César Franck,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Salvatore Accardo,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Itzhak Perlman,  Gerhard Oppitz  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Sir Eugene Goossens,  Richard Bonynge
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 124.
    Legendary Treasures - David Oistrakh Collection Vol 8 - Bach
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 7760 Release Date: 12/26/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Yehudi Menuhin,  David Oistrakh,  Vladimir Yampolsky,  Alexander Korneyev  ... 
    Conductor:  Alexander Orlov,  Rudolf Barshai
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  USSR State Symphony Orchestra,  Moscow Chamber Orchestra
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  • 125.
    Legendary Treasures - David Oistrakh Collection Vol 7
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 7750 Release Date: 04/25/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Mikhail Terian,  Sviatoslav Knushevitzky,  David Oistrakh,  Pyotr Bondarenko
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