Indiana University

Skip to:

  1. Search
  2. Breadcrumb Navigation
  3. Content
  4. Browse by Topic
  5. Services & Resources
  6. Additional Resources
  7. Multimedia News

Media Contacts

Alain Barker
Jacobs School of Music

Linda Cajigas
Jacobs School of Music

Last modified: Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Violin legend Josef Gingold remembered in 100th birthday celebration

Joshua Bell and Jaime Laredo to be among featured artists

WHAT: Josef Gingold -- A 100th Birthday Celebration for a Musical Legend
WHEN: Nov. 1, 8 p.m.
WHERE: IU Auditorium, 1211 E. Seventh St.
TICKETS: Free reserved seating tickets available in person beginning Oct. 12 at noon from both the IU Auditorium and Musical Arts Center box offices. Limit four per person. For those who are unable to visit the box office, a limited number of tickets will be available at A handling fee for the processing of the tickets will be applied.

Oct. 6, 2009

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- A celebration befitting the centennial birthday of one of the greatest violinists and violin pedagogues of all time, Josef Gingold, will be presented Nov. 1 at 8 p.m. at Indiana University Auditorium.

Two of his most prominent students, now with international reputations of their own and both on faculty at the IU Jacobs School of Music, will be featured artists at the concert -- Joshua Bell and Jaime Laredo, who will also serve as music director.

Bell and Laredo will be joined by the IU Violin Virtuosi, the Celebration Orchestra and special guests.

The program will include Concerto in D Minor for Two Violins, Strings and Continuo, BWV 1043, by J. S. Bach; Serenade for Strings in C Major, Op. 48, by Tchaikovsky; Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso in A Minor for Violin and Orchestra by Saint-SaŽns, with Joshua Bell as soloist; and Praeludium and Allegro (in the style of Pugnani) by Kreisler.

Distinguished Professor Emeritus Gingold joined the IU Jacobs School of Music faculty in 1960 and continued to teach until a few weeks before his death in January 1995, at the age of 85.

"As it is titled, our concert is in celebration of a musical legend," said Jacobs School of Music Dean Gwyn Richards. "Josef Gingold was that and more to the world of music and to students throughout the world. His imprint upon them, and upon the field he so dearly loved, is indelible. In gathering for this musical celebration, the school seeks to fete his accomplishments, cherish his memory and echo his musical spirit through works with which he was identified."

A young Joshua Bell plays with legendary violinist Josef Gingold.

Print-Quality Photo

"I was extremely fortunate to have studied violin with this great master. I considered Josef Gingold to be not only my teacher, but my mentor and grandfather figure," said Bell. "I am reminded of his resounding voice, his sense of humor, his generous spirit, his glorious sound and incredible technique and, even more importantly as a student, his link to the violinists of the past. He enriched my life in so many ways and helped define me as the musician I am today. He remains the most memorable and significant person in my musical life. I miss him."

In addition to Bell and Laredo, some of Gingold's most notable students include Andres Cardenas, Sara Caswell, Corey Cerovsek, Eugene Fodor, Miriam Fried, Herbert Greenberg, Ulf Hoelscher, Jacques Israelievitch, Raymond Kobler, Henryk Kowalski, Erez Ofir, William Preucil, Richard Roberts, Joseph Silverstein and Yuval Yaron.

"Josef Gingold, through his deep love of life and music, touched more people than anyone I've ever known," said Laredo. "To me, he was my teacher, my mentor, my colleague, my friend, and I always think of him as my second father. I am thrilled and honored to celebrate this great man's life with Josh Bell and the students at the Jacobs School of Music."

About Josef Gingold

Born in 1909 in the Belorussian city of Brest-Litovsk, Josef Gingold came to the United States shortly after World War I, during which he and his family had been in a German internment camp.

Having played the violin since early childhood, he studied with Vladimir Graffman and made his New York debut in 1926 at Aeolian Hall. The following year, he went to Belgium to study with the legendary Eugene Ysaye.

Returning to the United States during the Depression, Gingold took on various musical jobs, including long stints in Broadway orchestras. In 1937, he became a member of Toscanini's NBC Symphony Orchestra. In the ensuing years, he also played with the Primrose String Quartet. From 1943 to 1946, he was concertmaster of the Detroit Symphony.

He then served as concertmaster of the Cleveland Orchestra for 13 years under George Szell, later citing Szell as being the greatest influence on him as a musician and a teacher.

Gingold's first love was teaching, which he began at the age of 13. He taught at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland while with the Cleveland Orchestra. His full-time teaching began when he left Cleveland in 1960 to join the faculty of the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. For 30 summers, he directed the chamber music program of Ivan Galamian's Meadowmount School in Westport, N.Y. He gave annual master classes at the Paris Conservatory throughout the 1970s and served as jurist on innumerable violin competitions, including the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, which he founded in 1982.

Gingold is best known for the comprehensive values of musicianship he instilled in master classes and the close guidance he gave to chamber and orchestral musicians, rather than for the molding of virtuosos -- although he instructed many.

As a performer and a teacher, Gingold formed one of the last living links to the masterly 19th-century school of violin playing.

For more information about the IU Jacobs School of Music, see