Anika Vavic


Since her first public performance in her hometown Belgrade at the age of eight, she has consistently excelled in solo recitals, piano concerts, radio and TV programs as well as in various chamber music formations. Anika Vavic began studying in Vienna at the age of sixteen under Noel Flores at the University of Music and Performing Arts. She also received significant artistic inspiration from Elisabeth Leonskaja, Lazar Berman, Oleg Maisenberg, Alexander Satz and Mstislav Rostropovich.

Upcoming highlights include concerts with the Mariinsky Orchestra under Valery Gergiev (Shchedrin's Piano Concerto No. 4) in July 2013, her debut concerts with the London Philharmonic and Vladimir Jurowski in London at the BBC Proms in August 2013 and at the Enescu Festival in Bucharest (Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 3) and her return to the Munich Philharmonic, directed by Paavo Järvi (Scriabin) in March 2014.

During the past season Anika Vavic returned to the Munich Philharmonic (Beethoven's Choral Fantasy with Andrew Manze); she played the Scriabin Piano Concerto under the direction of Michael Sanderling, Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 2 at the Vienna Musikverein, recitals in Germany, Italy and Austria (at the Konzerthaus Vienna) and chamber music concerts with Renaud Capuçon and Daniel Müller-Schott, among others, at the Istanbul Music Festival.

In 2001 she won the Second Steinway Competition in Vienna, receiving a further special prize for the best interpretation of Haydn. In November 2001 she was awarded a scholarship by the prestigious Herbert von Karajan Centrum in Vienna and the Gottfried von Einem Foundation. In 2002 she received the Austrian National Award for Women in the Arts.

Anika Vavic made her debut at Vienna's Konzerthaus in 2003, playing Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto in B-flat minor. As a consequence, for the 2003/04 season she was chosen by the Vienna Musikverein and Konzerthaus for the highly esteemed "Rising Stars" concert cycle, which took her to the most famous concert halls in the world for recitals - among others to Carnegie Hall New York, Wigmore Hall London, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Vienna's Musikverein, Cologne's Philharmonie, the Cité de la Musique Paris, Mozarteum Salzburg and Festspielhaus Baden-Baden. Together with the Musikverein, the ORF produced a CD of her recital program.

Anika Vavic works regularly with orchestras such as the Mariinsky Orchestra, the Munich Philharmonic or the Radio Symphony Orchestras of Belgrade and Leipzig, collaborating with conductors such as Valery Gergiev, Paavo Järvi, Stefan Blunier, Andrés Orozco-Estrada and Jorma Panula.

She performs at festivals such as the "White Nights" in St. Petersburg, Valery Gergiev's Mikkelli Festival in Finland, the Piano Festival Ruhr, Schubertiade Schwarzenberg, Grafenegg Festival, Heidelberger Frühling, Styriarte Graz, Klangbogen Wien, Istanbul Music Festival and the Sommets Musicaux de Gstaad.

Anika Vavic also appears regularly at Vienna's Musikverein and Konzerthaus. Recital tours have taken her to halls such as the Kennedy Center Washington, the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, Laeiszhalle Hamburg, Philharmonie Luxembourg, Palau de la Música in Barcelona and in many further cities in Italy, Ireland, Finland, Japan, China and South America, Germany, Switzerland and of course Austria.

Her repertoire ranges from the baroque to contemporary music. Over the years, Mstislav Rostropovich worked with her on Prokofiev's and Shostakovich's piano sonatas, piano concerti and chamber music works, introducing her to Russian contemporary works as well. Some of them have received their world premieres by Anika Vavic, for example the Piano Concerto dedicated to her by the Chinese-Austrian composer Shih (Requiem for Piano, Strings and Membranophone), whose Piano Quintet she also premiered (together with members of the Vienna Philharmonic in New York). Apart from Shih, Johannes Maria Staud, Kalevi Aho, Vlastimir Trajkovic, Galina Ustwolskaja, Henryk Gorecki and especially Rodion Shchedrin are among her favorite contemporary composers.

Her chamber music partners include Gautier Capuçon, Renaud Capuçon, Daniel Hope, Rainer Honeck, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Daniel Müller-Schott, Caroline Widmann, Claudius Popp, Matthias Schorn and the Quintette Aquilon.

After she recorded her first CD with the Quarteto Amazonia from Brazil as well as the co-production of her solo-CD by ORF and Musikverein with the program of her Rising Stars tour (works by Haydn, Scriabin, Ravel and Prokofiev), recently the label Gramola has released her current recital CD with works by Beethoven, Schumann, Chopin and Prokofiev, which received outstanding reviews:

"Her brilliant, powerful playing has a certain orchestral touch, a phenomenon common in Russian pianists. Her classical sense for form prevents her from ever getting lost in the flow of the sounds. A strong, impressive CD which stands out from the mass of new releases." Die Bühne

"Stupendous creative intelligence and expressive powers. Her recital CD, produced in her adopted hometown of Vienna, is full of energy and wit, but never lacks intense profundity either." Kieler Nachrichten

Current as of April 17, 2013 – Please use only the most current version!

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Short Profile

NameVavic, Anika
Born inSerbia, Europe
Home LocationVienna, Austria
Main languageGerman
Additional languages English,  Serbian,  Russian 
Bizet Symphony in C, Queen's Hall, Review
2016-04-15 The Edinburgh Guide, Edinburgh

The accomplished Serbian pianist, Anika Vavic, was the soloist and in the first movement she gave a thrilling performance, emphasising the lively staccato theme. The middle movement, by comparison, was mellow, reminding one of Shostakovich's melancholic moods. However, without a break we go straight into the finale which picks up the theme from the first movement. An inspired performance by both Anika Vavic and the musicians. An appreciative audience insisted on an encore in which Vavic sensitively played Scriabin's 'Dance Languido'.

(Barbara Bryan )
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Vavic, SCO, Bloch, Queen's Hall, Edinburgh
2016-04-17 The Arts desk, Edinburgh

Despite all the high spirits and fizzing humour, though, there was always an edge of menace to Vavic's vision of the Concerto that never let us forget it utilitarian Soviet origins – even if she gave way nicely to indulgence in a lush slow movement, whose luxurience she matched in the exquisite, restless Scriabin prelude she offered as an encore, seemingly made up on the spot.

(David Kettle)
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Erfolg mit Skrjabin
2016-01-18 Kronen Zeitung, Vienna

Success with Scriabin

She celebrated a triumph at the RSO Cycle at the Konzerthaus: Anika Vavic, a pianist born in Belgrade and living in Vienna, enthralled her audience with Alexander Scriabin's Piano Concerto in F-sharp Minor.

Scriabin, a brilliant pianist himself who enjoyed international success with this work, tried to realize his ideas of virtuosity, a specific dramaturgy of sound and a highly idiosyncratic instrumentation – the latter formerly demonized by the critics. Anika Vavic played these svelte cantilenas and attractive-sounding blocks of chords with elegance. For the orchestra, she was a driving partner, poised in the dialogues and intent on an opulent sound.

(Karlheinz Roschitz)
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Jung, weiblich, energetisch
2016-01-17 Die Presse, Vienna

Young, Female, Energetic

Pianist Anika Vavic shines in her collaboration with the RSO and the 29-year-old conductor Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla at the Konzerthaus.

Given that the world of classical music is still male-dominated, the audience had an unusual sight on Friday night at the Konzerthaus: the petite 29-year-old Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla skillfully conducted the ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra, the first and second violins were played by ladies, and with the pianist Anika Vavic, the undisputed star of the evening was also a woman. At the end of the pieces, there were no kisses on the hand, but friendly embraces.

The listeners were particularly enthusiastic about the performance of Alexander Scriabin's Concerto for Piano and Orchestra in F-sharp Minor. The perfect harmony between piano and orchestra was especially notable in the second movement. Vavic created surging waves of sound complementing the theme played by the strings, and thanked the audience for its accolades with an energetic encore. […]

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Energie der Tiefenschärfe
2016-01-17 Der Standard, Vienna

Energetic Depth of Focus

The ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra Vienna under Conductor Mirga Grazinyte-Tyla

Vienna. What is more interesting – the works, or the interpreter's approach? What should be more important when mediocre works are played gorgeously? The program of the RSO Vienna was one to inspire such questions: thus, Mieczyslav Weinberg's Suite No. 4 (from the ballet The Golden Key) offers a round of characteristic scenes, brilliantly fabricated, but of limited originality in its ideas: the grotesque tone, ironic neo-classicism, elegiac melodiousness – all that, Weinberg had mastered. However, he usually stuck to predictable patterns.

In the case of the young Alexander Scriabin's Piano Concerto, things are the other way round: although he also hews closely to classical-romantic forms, the three movements abound with inspired ideas. The orchestration, however, remains somewhat flat at times. Soloist Anika Vavic, on the other hand, came to her part with verve and gave it a clearly-contoured presence, not superficially brilliant, but full of energy and a full, creamy tone, which also pervaded her encore – Fragilité from Scriabin's Four Pieces Op. 51. […]

(Daniel Ender)
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Artis kvartet, 22.IV 2015., Radio Beograd 2, Ars Sonora, 27.IV 2015
 Radio Beograd 2, Belgrade

 Гостовања врхунских камерних састава у Београду нису тако честа. Артис Квартет из Беча представља један од таквих, те је права штета што у сали Коларчеве задужбине није било више публике. У другом делу концерта наступили су са пијанисткињом Аником Вавић. Изведена су дела Волфганга Амадеуса Моцарта, Готфрида фон Ајнема и Јоханеса Брамса. 

          Артис квартет је основан 1980. године. Снимиo je више од тридесет компакт дискова, а један је од ретких ансамбала који свира у стојећем ставу. Наступао је по целом свету, апознат је по томе што је на концертима у Токију и Бечу 1991. године, извео све Моцартове квартете. Ово је поновио 1997., када је у дворанама Консертгебау у Амстердаму, Де Делен у Ротердаму и Музикферајн у Бечу извеo све квартете Франца Шуберта. Његови чланови свирају на врхунским инструментима: виолину Петера Шумајера 2001. је израдио Јохан Ромбах, док остали музичари у Артис квартету свирају на инструментима из Колекције Аустријске националне банке. Јоханес Мајсл користи Гварнеријеву виолину из 1690., Херберт Кефер виолу Гвадањинија из 1784., док Отмар Милер свира Аматијево виолончело из 1573. Сливање и преплети деоница код овог ансамбла су веома јасно дефинисани кроз укупну архитектонику звука: највиша виолинска деоница изразито је светла. Боје осталих инструмената такође имају јасно oдређен карактер и у изврсном реду су наслојене једна на другу. Све остале нијансе тичу се стилске одређености композиције која се изводи.

            У интерпретацији Гудачког квартета број 19 у Це-дуру, КВ 465 познатог као Дисонанца Волфганга Амадеуса Моцарта,Артис квартет се показао као састав чија би специјалност била и музика овог композитора. Већ на самом почетку, у лаганом уводу првог става, деонице су биле усклађене до крајње мере, те је истицање дисонантних сазвучја по коме је квартет и добио име, имало изразиту експресивну вредност. Алегро првог става изведен је у брзом темпу, те су нарочито импресивно звучали бриљантно одсвирани "

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Interview in RITMO
2014-12-11 RITMO, Madrid
"Un punto de encuentro con las actividades de artistas y gestores musicales en nuestro país

La sacerdotisa de Scriabin

De niña prodigio en Belgrado a reconocida pianista internacional. Desde su debut como concertista a los ocho años, una larga lista de triunfos profesionales, a ambos lados del Atlántico, han consolidado a Anika Vavic como aclamada pianista en las salas de conciertos más famosas del mundo: Carnegie Hall de Nueva York, Kennedy Center de Washington, Concertgebouw de Amsterdam, Mozarteum de Salzburgo, Royal Albert Hall de Londres, Musikverein y Konzerthaus de Viena, entre otras. Su virtuosismo, expresividad y claridad de articulación han recibido el aplauso de sus colegas y las más importantes batutas de la actualidad no han escatimado elogios para ensalzar a la pianista serbia: Mariss Jansons y Zubin Metha la consideran una pianista de extraordinario talento; Ozawa destaca su hermosa forma de tocar y gran técnica. Daniel Barenboim ha dicho que posee el gran don de tocar el piano sinfónico, como si varios instrumentos estuvieran tocando al mismo tiempo. Quien la haya escuchado alguna vez interpretando a Prokofiev, difícilmente podrá olvidarla. Su debut en los Proms con la Filarmónica de Londres y Vladimir Jurowski (agosto 2013) fue saludado con una verdadera aclamación, tanto del público como de la crítica, que habló de su interpretación como algo excepcional (Tim Ashley, The Guardian) y la llamó "poetisa de la música". La prensa alemana ya la ha bautizado como "la sacerdotisa de Scriabin" (Christian Strehk, Kieler Nachrichten). A escasos días del 2015, año en el que se celebra el centenario del nacimiento de Scriabin, Anika Vavic habla para RITMO con la sencillez y la amabilidad que la caracterizan.

De niña prodigio en Belgrado a alumna más joven de la Universidad de Música y  Artes Escénicas de Viena, ¿existía tradición musical en su familia? ¿Cómo decide  que quiere ser pianista?

Existía tradición de cantant"

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An interesting evening - The Munich Philharmonics under Paavo Järvi
2014-03-14 Süddeutsche Zeitung,

[...] In the Philharmonie the pianist Anika Vavic plays it (Alexander Scriabin's only piano concerto) with immaculate technique, lucid accuracy and a very poetic touch.

(Michael Stallknecht)
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Beschwingter Frühling
2014-03-14 Münchner Merkur, München
""Die [...] Pianistin ließ Skrjabins faszinierend farbige Musik in allen Nuancen strahlen. Verträumt zeichnete sie die feinen Läufe und Themen im ersten Satz nach, energisch und wie in einem Gefühlsrausch das punktierte Motiv des Finales. [...] ein fantastisches Stück, das aus Anika Vavic herauszuströmen scheint. Sie wird eins mit dem Klavier und der Musik."

"The pianist made Scriabin's fascinatingly colourful music shine in all its hues. She dreamily retraces all those fine passages and themes in the first movement, whilst energetically and like on an emotional high retracing the dotted motive of the finale. But the stealthy climax is actually the graceful second movement: In four variations the song-like theme, which Scriabin had allegedly already written at the age of eleven, is sometimes modified with tenderness and other times it is deep and sinister; a fantastic piece that seems to surge from Anika Vavic. She becomes one with the piano and the music"
(Anita Svach)
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Prom 64: LPO/Jurowski – review
2013-09-01 The Guardian, London

...Prokofiev's Third Piano Concerto was wonderful

...The Prokofiev, however, was striking and very unusual. Pianist Anika Vavic's dexterous but soft-grained playing, wonderfully supple and beautifully nuanced, was the absolute antithesis of the virtuoso aggression we hear in most performances of the work. Jurowski conducted with infinite grace and a nice line in knowing irony.

(Tim Ashley)
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Russian evening with south wind
2013-08-02 Kärntner Krone, Villach

You will never regret attending a concert with the Mariinsky Orchestra St. Petersburg under Valery Gergiev. That means concentrated sound power, which gives the music colors and wings, and lets it glow and burn. And if, as on Wednesday, pianist Anika Vavic, a virtuoso with an edge has a finger in the pie, the big CS-evening will turn into an event.

…At the highest level was the Austrian premiere of Rodion Shchedrin's Piano Concerto No. 4. In its adventurous, complicated structures you will clearly find the popular sound-heritage of Russia, as if it were not possible "without". There are, on the other hand, almost surreal, brilliant, sharp instrumental dialogues, such as between strings and winds as well as pounding cadences, but also melancholy moments on the piano. Because this monumental piece is without any flats it is called "sharp keyes" and is only playable by the very best pianists.

The young pianist Vavic, originally from Serbia, has the appropriate skills and temper and release this Shchedrin like a warm south wind under the skin, together with Gergiev's temperament and determination.

(Andrea Hein)
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Die Tastenvirtuosin als melancholische Eremitin
2013-07-29 Der Standard, Vienna

Die aus Belgrad stammende Pianistin Anika Vavic spielt beim diesjährigen Carinthischen Sommer Schtschedrins viertes Klavierkonzert

Ein Gespräch mit der Künstlerin über das Werk und Vavics Arbeitswelt

Wien - Zum Gespräch ins Innenstadtcafé kommt sie in einem wunderschönen blauen Kleid und mit einem wunderschönen Dackel - dem österreichischen Champion seiner Rasse. Anika Vavic wird beim Carinthischen Sommer Rodion Schtschedrins Viertes Klavierkonzert spielen, als österreichische Erstaufführung, mit Waleri Gergijew und dem Orchester des Mariinski-Theaters. Darüber gilt es zu reden wie auch über ihre Karriere. Vavic spricht im ruhigen Tonfall, in welchem auch Mattheit und Melancholie mitklingen.

Vavic hat Gergijew 2005 erstmals vorgespielt, der Stardirigent hat sie sofort für das Jahr darauf zu den Weißen Nächten in St. Petersburg eingeladen - welches für die gebürtige Belgraderin in den Folgejahren fast zum liebsten Auftrittsort werden sollte: "In Russland gibt es noch einen Hunger nach Kultur, das spürt man." Eine regelmäßige Zusammenarbeit mit Gergijew war die Folge, und auch die Idee, eines der Klavierkonzerte von Schtschedrin zu machen, kam vom russischen Dirigenten. Zuerst waren Nummer eins und drei im Gespräch; bei einem Treffen in München, Schtschedrins deutschem Wohnsitz, erschien der Komponist aber mit der Partitur seines vierten Klavierkonzerts.

Ein Auftragswerk von Steinway, 1992 in New York uraufgeführt, selten gespielt, da extrem schwierig: "Es ist ein Werk, an dem man sehr hart arbeiten muss. Das Stück ist fast klassisch gearbeitet, was die Themenaufstellung anbelangt, der erste der zwei Sätze beginnt mit einem kurzen Motiv, einer Zelle, aus der sich das Material entwickelt."

Phrasen à la Chopin

Die Farben des Orchesterparts seien im ersten Satz düster"

(Stefan Ender)
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Andrew Manze conducts the Philharmonic Orchestra in Munich
2012-06-22 Süddeutsche Zeitung, München

The way he conducts Beethoven's Coriolan Overture in the beginning should drive historic performance practice purists crazy: Andre Manze has a huge symphonic orchestra send wave after wave of crescendo breaking over the audience in Munich's Philharmonie, creating a very romantic hero, a Faustian protagonist of the Sturm und Drang who suddenly falls apart into dust at the end.

Manze is slowly being noticed as a jack of all trades: originally a great baroque violinist, he has been expanding his interests in all directions as a conductor. Thus, it is hardly surprising that he took over a completely non-baroque and somewhat strangely composed program at the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra from his colleague Constantinos Carydis, who had been taken ill. (...)

Manze seemed equally happy to let the piano soloist Anika Vavic lead with a rather classicistic, nobly differentiated tone in Beethoven's Chorfantasie. (...)

(Michael Stallknecht)
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