The international music scene has been left without Alexander Vedernikov, one of the most highly-acclaimed European conductors, who passed away yesterday in Moscow. A dear guest and a great favorite of the Belgrade Philharmonic and its audience, he was also a close friend of our Permanent Guest Conductor Daniel Raiskin. Tonight’s concert will be dedicated to the memory of this great conductor and remarkable man.

Vedernikov was chief conductor of the Danish Royal Opera, the Odense Symphony Orchestra, and during the period when he was musical director and chief conductor of the Bolshoi Theater, he was instrumental in rebuilding that institution’s worldwide historical reputation. He performed with the Belgrade Philharmonic on two occasions, with two memorable concerts in 2017 and 2018. A new collaboration had been planned for the following seasons.

Vedernikov was born in Moscow on January 11, 1964 and came from a musical family. His father, also Alexander, was an opera singer, known throughout the Soviet Union and beyond for his roles, and his mother, Natalia Gureyeva, was an organ professor at the Moscow Conservatory. Alexander Vedernikov completed his music studies in 1990 at the Moscow Conservatory and from 1988 to 1990 he worked at the Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Theaters in Moscow. From 1988 to 1995 he was assistant chief conductor and second conductor in the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, and in 1995 he founded the Russian Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, where he was artistic director and chief conductor until 2004.

Vedernikov collaborated with almost all major symphony orchestras and opera houses in Europe. Recently, he distinguished himself with his performances with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the eight-week season of promenade concerts of classical music in London (Proms), at the Prague Spring Festival, and at guest appearances with the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Danish National Symphony, the NHK Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Scottish Symphony, the Dutch Radio Symphony, the Helsinki Philharmonic, the RTE Symphony, and the Russian National Symphony Orchestra.

Rest easy Maestro, you will never be forgotten.