Georgian Embassy’s Employee in Israel Claims 1st Place at Kalmi Piano Competition

Young Georgian pianist Alexander Julakidze was named winner of the prestigious Haim Kalmi Piano Competition in Jerusalem. The 24-year-old Georgian musician was awarded first prize at the grand ceremony of the competition on June 15. The ceremony was transmitted through 30-minute live streaming on Kol HaMusica Radio, which saw the virtuoso pianist performing famous pieces: Toccata by Robert Schumann, Balade No 4 by Johannes Brahms and Spanish Rhapsody by Franz Liszt.

“The winner of the contest is… Alexander Julakidze, an employee of Georgian Embassy to Jerusalem and a pianist from Tbilisi, also a student of the Jerusalem Music and Dance Academy,“ the anchor of the popular radio show announced.

As the winner told GEORGIA TODAY, the contest was carried out on a global scale and 30 students took part in it.

“The contestants were selected through two stages. After the first stage, 10 students were shortlisted and at the second stage winners of the first three places were announced. Winning the competition was one of my top goals since arriving in Jerusalem. During my first days here, I discovered the Haim Kalmi Piano Competition and started preparing for it,” Alexander Julakidze told us.

Before claiming the first place, Alexander had already earned his fame through a variety of activities. Apart from the fact that he pursues an MA at the Jerusalem Music and Dance Academy, in parallel he works at the Georgian Embassy. On May 26, he also performed at the concert in Tel Aviv dedicated to the 100th Anniversary of the Establishment of Georgia’s First Democratic Republic together with his tutor and great maestro, Vadim Monastyrski.

“It has been quite an exhausting month,” he admitted. “First I took part in an audition and earned a scholarship. That was followed by the concert marking 100th Anniversary of the Establishment of Georgia’s First Democratic Republic, and then this competition. I had a very busy schedule over these months. Every day I went to work and then practiced at home. Currently, I’m working in the direction of electronic music as well and soon I will release my very first set. I’m basically focused on techno sounds, yet I’m also attracted by Acid House Tech House and Deep house. Now I’m mastering Abletone and am planning to produce my own pieces in this direction. I’m also giving DJing a try and will soon complete my debut set. In short, I have successfully established myself in Jerusalem. Three months ago no one knew me in the academy, but now the situation has changed. I want to thank my professor and friend Vadim Monastyrski who assisted me. It is all the result of our friendship and the musical language through which we communicate. I also want to express my gratitude to Tbilisi State Conservatoire that gave me the foundation and carved me as a pianist. I also want to thank my supporters, in particular, those people with whom I interact every day. I want to thank my colleagues for bringing positive energy into my life, feeding me as an artist,” Alexander elaborated.

Alongside all the achievements mentioned above, the Georgian student has also initiated a cultural and professional exchange program between two countries that will be implemented at the beginning of October 2018. He says the project will establish and deepen the relations between the Tbilisi State Conservatoire and Jerusalem Music and Dance Academy. Within the frames of the program, five students from Jerusalem will visit Georgia, participate in workshops run by Georgian professors and will deliver concerts- and vice versa. Through performing in front of a Jewish audience, Georgian students will also demonstrate their skills and show the Georgian temperament to the foreign public.

By Lika Chigladze

21 June 2018 19:08