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Ivan Tatarinov, Graduate Student in Organ Performance at SMU Meadows School of the Arts, Wins First Prize at 11th Mikael Tariverdiev International Organ Competition in Kaliningrad, Russia

Award includes $5,000 and concerts in Europe

DALLAS (SMU) --- Organist Ivan Tatarinov, who earned an Artist Certificate in organ performance at SMU Meadows School of the Arts in 2019 and is a current student in the Master of Music program, has won first prize in the 11th Mikael Tariverdiev International Organ Competition, held in September at the Philharmonic Society Concert Hall and Kaliningrad Cathedral in Kaliningrad, Russia. The prize includes a cash award of $5,000. Tatarinov also won special prizes that include invitations to perform at prestigious concert halls and churches in Europe in 2020-21, including Jakobikirche in Lübeck, Germany; Michaeliskirche in Hamburg, Germany; Riga Cathedral, Latvia; and Roermond International Organ Festival, Netherlands. In addition, he was invited to perform at the Oliwa Cathedral in Gdansk, Poland, and at the Kaliningrad Cathedral.


Tatarinov won the top award with a performance of works by eight composers, including Bruhns, Messiaen, Bach, Liszt and others, and his own composition. He is a student of Stefan Engels, the Leah Young Fullinwider Centennial Chair in Music Performance and professor of organ at the Meadows School.

“This is an incredible honor,” said Tatarinov. “I cannot express how happy and excited I am. Winning the Tariverdiev International Organ Competition for an organist is akin to winning the Tchaikovsky competition for a pianist. It was a long and thorny path, but it was worth it. The biggest factor of my triumph is my professor, Stefan Engels. He is just an amazing human being and mentor, the best teacher I’ve ever had. I always knew that with him I would become a greater musician. And this first prize is just a beginning!”


The competition is held every other year and is open to organists younger than 35. Initial rounds are held in Lawrence, Kansas; Hamburg, Germany; and Moscow, Russia. The second and third rounds are held in Kaliningrad.

The jury for the final rounds included nine internationally known organists and was chaired by Christophe Mantoux, professor of organ at the Pôle Supérieur and the Conservatoire Régional de Paris and principal organist of the Church of Saint-Séverin in Paris.

Tatarinov is an organist, composer, pianist, choral and orchestral conductor, and guitarist. A native of Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, he began his musical studies at the age of five, later attending Nizhny Novgorod Choir College, Nizhny Novgorod State Conservatory and Saint Petersburg State Conservatory. He has been participating in competitions since 2000 as both a composer and performer and has won numerous awards. In addition, he has played in concerts around the globe and has been a frequent guest on radio and TV programs. He will earn his M.M. in organ performance at SMU Meadows in 2021.

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