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Boris Pergamenschikow (1948 - 2004)

Boris Pergamenschikow, who died prematurely of cancer, was best known in the West as a committed and evangelical chamber musician, although he also made a name as a soloist, albeit under the restrictions of travel imposed by the Soviet regime. His father was an orchestral cellist and his mother a piano accompanist; at six he was sent to cellist Emmanuel Fischmann in Leningrad, later enrolling at the Leningrad Conservatory where he learnt cello, piano and composition and, by all accounts, was equally gifted in all three activities. Aged eighteen Pergamenschikow finally made the decision to concentrate on cello playing and gave his formal Leningrad début playing Boccherini, Tchaikovsky and some of his own compositions. A string of competition successes followed and he emigrated to Cologne in 1977, following a large number of invitations to play in the West. Although he gave two successful concerts in New York in 1982 and 1984, it was noted by critics at the time that his performances were perhaps not as enthusiastically received as they deserved. Nonetheless, he soon became established as a solo and chamber musician, notably performing to great acclaim at the Wigmore Hall in London with András Schiff in the 1990s.




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