Efrem Podgaits born in Russia in 1949 has to date composed twelve operas, three symphonies and 26 concertos, some for more neglected instruments such as the bayan (a chromatic button accordion), marimba, mandolin, balalaika and percussion.
In 2009 Mr. Podgaits was honored by performances around the world of more than 60 major works, including the premieres of two operas and eleven concerts devoted solely to his own compositions. For many years he has written music for the renowned children’s choir Vesna. In fact his music for children has a special place in his output; he creates music that evokes dream-like states, poetic fantasy, and love of nature.
Mikhail Bronner wrote his concerto In Search of the Holy Grail in 2004 for Levon Ambartsumian and his five-year old son Alexander. It was premiered in the University of Georgia’s Hodgson Hall, then performed in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and in the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory with a subsequent recording on CD under “Artservice“ a Russian label.