DANIEL LOZAKOVICH: BACH
The 17-year-old violinist amazes audiences and critics alike with his mature, carefully considered playing. On 8 June, Deutsche Grammophon will release his debut album.
“More than a child prodigy” – so ran the headline in the German daily newspaper Der Tagesspiegel following a concert given by 17-year-old violinist Daniel Lozakovich in Berlin in February 2018. “A thoroughly serious young performer; you can hear that he is his own man.” Daniel Lozakovich comes across not as a teenage virtuoso but as a thoughtful young musician; his playing is exceptionally mature and has already convinced such prominent musical colleagues as conductors Valery Gergiev and Andris Nelsons. Daniel has many interests and, although his parents originally imagined he would embark upon a career as a professional tennis player, he is now making his way in the world with up-bows rather than backhands. That there is not only raw talent at play when he performs, but also a complete understanding of the work in question, is clear from his debut recording, as an exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist, of works by Johann Sebastian Bach.
“The boy has a stunning technique, near-perfect intonation, and his bowing shows real assurance, enabling him to produce a pure, airy, luminous sound. Lozakovich’s Beethoven is highly sensitive, with subtle colourings and wonderfully shapely phrases controlled right to the end of the note, eschewing any temptation to play to the gallery.” Le Monde was deeply impressed by Daniel Lozakovich in December 2017, when he played the Beethoven Violin Concerto – one of the pillars of the violin repertoire – in Paris, affirming that the young violinist’s most astonishing quality was his restraint: whereas other virtuosos emphasize their technique for effect, Lozakovich gives the music space and leaves his playing to speak for itself. His admiration for past masters of the violin such as Christian Ferras, Jascha Heifetz, Leonid Kogan and Yehudi Menuhin may have helped shape this approach. He has also been very much influenced by his teacher, Josef Rissin, and also by Eduard Wulfson, who has been mentoring him since 2015.
It was only by chance that Daniel Lozakovich, who was born in Sweden in 2001, began playing the violin at the age of six: his parents, neither of them musicians, sent a sports-mad Daniel to a music school, where he resolutely chose the violin as his instrument. After his very first lesson, his teacher declared him exceptionally talented, and two years later he made his debut with the Moscow Virtuosi and Vladimir Spivakov. In the years that followed, his concerts and numerous prize-winning competition appearances drew the attention of industry insiders and won him some prominent backers: Valery Gergiev invited him to make a solo appearance as early as 2015. Concerts with, among others, Andris Nelsons, Semyon Bychkov, Hartmut Haenchen and Robin Ticciati followed.
In 2016 Deutsche Grammophon announced that it was signing an exclusive contract with Daniel Lozakovich, with a view to working with him long-term. On 8 June 2018 the company will release his first recording, giving him a chance to introduce his musical thinking to a wider public. The choice of Bach spotlights a composer whose music, according to Lozakovich, shows your true colours as a musician, because it is impossible to hide behind the notes. Which he doesn’t need to do: whether collaborating with the Chamber Orchestra of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra in Bach’s First and Second Violin Concertos or playing solo violin in the Second Partita, Lozakovich’s debut recording demonstrates his enthusiasm and aptitude for chamber music utterly convincingly. Playing with Ivry Gitlis, Daniel Hope and Martin Fröst, he has also proved it on stage.
Despite being a talented musician, Daniel Lozakovich is also open to the world beyond music and has many interests. Although his career as a tennis player has been cancelled, as well as pursuing his studies at school in Geneva he remains an avid sports enthusiast, with a particular love of football and boxing. He has as much time for the Beatles, Eric Clapton and Django Reinhardt as he does for Bach, Beethoven or Bartók and is relaxed about his own development, preferring to study and consolidate his repertoire properly and broaden it only when he feels ready. As a young musician with a firm grasp of how to communicate his musical interests with confidence and style, Daniel Lozakovich is certainly one to watch – and far more than just a teenage prodigy.
DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON SIGNS SWEDISH VIOLIN PRODIGY
Dr. Clemens Trautmann (President DG),
Photo: © Julia Schoierer / DG
As he prepares for this year’s Verbier Festival as well as major debuts with leading symphony orchestras and conductors, 15-year-old Daniel Lozakovich joins the Yellow Label
Berlin, 15 June 2016
Deutsche Grammophon is pleased to announce the addition today of 15-year-old Swedish violinist Daniel Lozakovich to its family of artists. With growing excitement and admiration, classical-scene observers have been following the public performances of Lozakovich with many notable orchestras, conductors and well-established violinists since his concerto debut six years ago with the Moscow Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra and Vladimir Spivakov.
“Daniel displays all the attributes, the inordinate talent and the necessary dedication to achieve the kind of inspired classical music performance which is the hallmark of each and every musician at home on Deutsche Grammophon’s roster, both past and present,” comments Dr Clemens Trautmann, President of Deutsche Grammophon. “More pertinently, Daniel’s signing reflects our commitment to the bright and exciting future of classical music recording – a future which he perfectly embodies. We are sure his artistry will both delight existing classical fans and appeal to and inspire a younger generation, drawing them into a new musical world.”
Lozakovich will open his long-term association with Deutsche Grammophon by recording two orchestral albums and a recital disc, with the Beethoven Concerto set to be among his first releases. Lozakovich feels a particular affinity with this work, and has honed his interpretation of it in a series of recent concerts, including his first-prize-winning performance at last month’s Spivakov Competition and his appearance just days later with the Mariinsky Orchestra under Valery Gergiev in the closing concert of the XV Moscow Easter Festival, but his virtuoso violin repertoire already encompasses far more – from Bach, Vivaldi and Mozart to Tchaikovsky and Bartók.
Having garnered numerous top prizes and accolades at music competitions from Vienna to Moscow, Stockholm to Austin, Lozakovich, now the youngest musician currently signed with DG, has expressed his delight about joining the label: “I’m very happy and excited to be joining Deutsche Grammophon! Just being linked with the amazing musicians who are part of the history of DG makes me feel so incredibly proud! I’m looking forward to making wonderful music with my new friends and colleagues in some thrilling new recordings.”
Daniel Lozakovich has performed as a soloist throughout Europe with orchestras including the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Vienna Chamber Orchestra, Orchestre National de Lyon, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Tchaikovsky Symphony and the Moscow Philharmonic. This season and next, amongst other commitments, he performs again with the Mariinsky and also with the Munich Philharmonic under Valery Gergiev, makes his Swedish Radio Symphony debut with Robin Ticciati and returns to the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic with Semyon Bychkov, as well as appearing with two conductors of the younger generation: Lorenzo Viotti and Lahav Shani.
He will make a return visit this summer to the Verbier Festival, a place that has played a key role in his career so far, thanks to his encounters there with a wide range of fellow musicians. These have led to invitations from Andris Nelsons to join him and the Boston Symphony Orchestra at next year’s Tanglewood Festival, and from Gianandrea Noseda to perform with him in Italy in the near future.
And Lozakovich’s fledgling recording career with DG already has a preliminary highlight: last year he recorded a Bartók Violin Duo with fellow violinist Daniel Hope – and now fellow Yellow Label artist – that landed on Hope’s recently released, and critically acclaimed, album My Tribute to Yehudi Menuhin.
Hope was hugely impressed by Lozakovich’s technique and insight, a response widely echoed by audiences and critics. “It was an unexpected moment of sheer wonder,” wrote the reviewer for Le Temps of his solo performance of a pair of Tchaikovsky works in Geneva earlier this year with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. “Face-to-face with the evidence of his confidence, intensity, expertise and a depth of musical maturity far beyond his years, we could only be enraptured.”