Mikhail Utkin was born 1952 in Vilnius (Lithuania). Since 1959 he studied at the
Central Musical School of the Moscow State Conservatory in the class of Stefan
Kalianov. In 1970-75, studied at the Moscow Conservatory with Mstislav
Rostropovich and later with Kalianov (post-graduate course). Winner of the
International Competition of the Prague Radio "Concertino-Praha" (1967).
Prize-winner of the International String Quartet Competition in Liege (1972).
Since 1974, M.Utkin has been a member of a well-known ensemble "Moscow Piano
Trio". Together with his colleagues - violinist Vladimir Ivanov and pianist
Alexander Bonduriansky - he won the First Prize in Budapest (1975) and Maurice
Ravel Gold Medal at the International festival "Musical May" in Bordeaux
Mr.Utkin's activities were highly appraised. Among other important awards, he
received an honorary title of "People's Artist of Russia" (1994), the most
prestigious title for artists in Russia, and Award of the Moscow City Government
Mikhail Utkin made his first transcriptions of classical compositions for cello
and ensembles with the cello during his studies at the Conservatory. In the
course of time it became a serious creative work. Up to now he has made more
than 250 arrangements and transcriptions, from Bach, Rameau and Couperin to
contemporary composers. Some of them were published by "Classica XXI", "Compo-zitor
Publishing House, Saint-Petersburg", "Marimba" (Munich) they are performed with
success in Russia and abroad, many of them were recorded and issued on CDs.
His transcriptions were highly appraised by eminent critics, composers and
"I listened to your disc with arrangements of works by Shostakovich for oboe and
strings with a great interest. I must confess that I am not very enthusiastic
about all kinds of arrangements; in my opinion, they always spoil the original
idea of the composer. But there are some exceptions. Your transcriptions are
among these wonderful exceptions. Listening to them I sometimes forgot that the
music was originally written for piano or orchestra; everything sounded so
naturally and so beautifully. I especially liked transcriptions of Preludes
op.34 and really brilliant Ballet Suite. I should also mention that the
performance is wonderful."
composer and musicologist
"Mikhail Utkin made his brilliant transcriptions in most delicate way,
penetrating into the most puzzling corners of the musical facture, cherishing it
according to the violoncello constituents. Phonation and rhythm are permeated
with sparkling vigorous humour. Hopeful, these arrangements would be the fair
crack of the whip for any educational and concert purposes."
This CD represent a number of arrangements by Mikhail Utkin made in different
years for cello and string orchestra, cello and piano, and trio with clarinet.