September 10, 2004
Contact: Jeffrey James Arts Consulting
516-586-3433 or

Top Three Finishers From Canada, Uruguay and Russia

New York, NY — The Vakhtang Jordania International Conducting Competition has announced the results of its 2004 competition held in Kharkov, Ukraine between August 30 and September 5. This year's competition featured 23 competitors from 17 countries around the world.

The 2004 Jordania Grand Prize and Audience Favorite Award Winner was Darko Butorac of Canada, who currently serves as the Director of Orchestras at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. Mr. Butorac previously served as the Music Director of the Musical Arts Youth Orchestra (Bloomington, IN) and conductor with the Louisville Youth Orchestra. A graduate of Indiana University, he has conducted over thirty concerts working with all of the schools five major ensembles. Two years ago Mr. Butorac was named a fellowship conductor at the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen. He was invited back this Summer and was named the assistant/cover conductor for the Aspen Opera Theater Center. Earlier this year Mr. Butorac was selected as one of four conductors to lead the Buffalo Philharmonic in a special masterclass with JoAnn Faletta and Jorge Mester. He has also appeared in masterclasses with Lorin Maazel, Andreas Delfs, Gunther Schuller, Gustav Meier and Sergiu Commissiona. Darko Butorac has also worked extensively at the Brevard Music Center and at the University of Toronto, his alma mater.

Darko Butorac

As Grand Prize Winner, Darko Butorac will receive concert engagements on three continents during the 2005-2006 concert season with The Kharkov Philharmonic of Kharkov, Ukraine, The Saratov Symphony Orchestra of Saratov, Russia, The Bolivian National Symphony in La Paz, Bolivia and the Daegu City Symphony Orchestra in Daegu, South Korea.

The William L. Montague, Jr. Second Prize was awarded to Martin Garcia of Montevideo, Uruguay. He was the Assistant Conductor of the University of Northern Colorado (USA) Symphony Orchestra, which was awarded Downbeat Magazine's "Best University Orchestra of the United States" in 2003. He was also selected by UNESCO in 1999 as a "Young Artist for Peace." He will receive an engagement with the Kharkov Philharmonic during the 2005-2006 concert season.

Third Prize winner was Evgeny Kirillov of Moscow, Russia. He is a Second Prize winner of the All-Russian competition of Choral Conducting in Salavat, Russia for 2002 and a 2003 recipient of a Certificate from the Vakhtang Jordania International Conducting Competition. He will also receive an engagement with the Kharkov Philharmonic during the 2005-2006 concert season.

Martin Garcia

The Orchestra Favorite prize was given to Alfredo Sorichetti of Civitanova Marche (MC), Italy, who was also a third round participant. He is the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Civitanova Festival in Civitanova. He also conducted at the Verdi Hall of the Conservatory of Milan, at the Bielozelskjj Theatre of Saint Petersburg, at the Bulgarian Hall of Sofia, at the Auditorium of the Villa Aurelia in Rome and at the Philharmonic Hall of Kiev.

Other Third Round participants were:

Lawrence Golan of Denver, Colorado USA, who is the resident conductor of Lamont Symphony Orchestra and Opera Theatre, the Director of Orchestral Studies and Professor of Conducting at the University of Denver, Lamont School of Music, the Music Director/Conductor of Colorado Youth Symphony Orchestras and the Portland Ballet Orchestra.

Alessandro Tortato of Venice, Italy, who was the 2003 recipient of the first prize at the International Competition for Orchestra Conducting of Maikop (Russia) for which he was selected to conduct the Berlin Kammerphilharmonie. Additionally, he has conducted in Milano, Trieste, Finland, Estonia, Venezia Giulia-Trieste, and Scotland.

Other participants in the competition included:

Kerim S. Anwar, a citizen of Canada who lives in Brno, Czech Republic, Joerg Bierhance of Munich, Germany, Carsten Bowien of Hamburg Germany, Rihards Buks of Riga, Latvia, Szymon Bywalec of Katowice, Poland, Edward Kawakami of Glendale, California, USA, Benjamin Kedem of Jerusalem, Israel, Antonio Lizarraga (Lopez), a citizen of Mexico who lives in Graz, Austria, Sasha Makila of Kerava, Finland, Octavio Mas Arocas of Valencia, Spain, Kim Byung Moo of Gwangju, Republic of Korea, Michael Pon, a citizen of Australia who lives in Marseille, France, David Rudge of Dunkirk, New York, USA, Pablo Sabat of Lima, Peru, Pierre Simard of Rosemere, Quebec, Canada and Slava Valeev of Moscow, Russia.

More information about these participants is available at the Vakhtang Jordania International Conducting Competition website -

The competition jury was composed of Marcello Abbado of Milan, Italy, Yuri Alzhnev of Kharkov, Ukraine, David Handel of La Paz, Bolivia, Joan McNeill Murray of Chattanooga, Tennessee, Jonathan Sternberg of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Yuri Suchkov of Moscow. More information about the jury is also available at the Conducting Competition website -

This year's Third Round Contemporary Compositions selections were Yuri Alznev's Sinfonietta, James Cohn's Song of the Waters and Mariano Morales Obertura Festiva. Mr. Alznev's work was presented by Darko Butorac and Lawrence Golan, Mr. Cohn's by Martin Garcia, Evgeny Kirillov and Alessandro Tortato and Mr. Morales' piece by Alfredo Sorichetti.

The 2004 Vakhtang Jordania International Conducting Competition was a great success, both artistically and as a means for continuing to bring the Kharkov Philharmonic Orchestra ( to the rest of the world. In addition to the lively competition, contestants also participated in a series of Master Classes and special events and enjoyed the opportunity to have individual and small group instruction and interaction with jury and orchestra members. Also important was the chance to meet and spend time with other conductors from around the world.

Building on the great success of this year's event, planning for an expanded and even more international 2005 Vakhtang Jordania International Conducting Competition has already begun.

For information about the Competition, please contact Jeffrey James Arts Consulting at 516-586-3433 or

Jeffrey James Arts Consulting
Jeffrey James,   President
45 Grant Ave.
Farmingdale, NY 11735
Tel & Fax: 516-586-3433   E-mail:

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