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New York’s 2022 Barbash Bach String Competition Announces Winner

Bassist Nina Bernat won the Grand Prize at this year's competition .


Open to international string players 16 to 30 years of age, the Lillian and Maurice Barbash J.S. Bach String Competition is focused entirely on the unaccompanied string Partitas, Sonatas, and Suites of J.S. Bach.

The 2022 Finals were held at Stony Brook University’s Staller Center Recital Hall on Thursday, December 1, and was streamed by The Violin Channel, here.

The Grand Prize winner is bassist Nina Bernat, who will receive $5,000, plus a number of performance invitations. She will be the featured soloist at the Island Symphony Bach Festival, which will be held at 2:00pm on Sunday, January 29, 2022, at St. Peter’s By-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Bay Shore, New York — and provides an additional $1,500 for this performance.

Bernat will also be invited to participate in a master class conducted by baroque violinist, Rachel Podger, which will be held at the Staller Center Recital Hall at 7:00pm on Thursday, December 1.

She began studying under the instruction of her father and former member of the Israel Philharmonic, Mark Bernat. She has continued her studies with Tim Cobb and cellist Astrid Schween at the Juilliard School.


Second Prize and $1000 went to violinist Yuki Serino.

Serino started studying the violin under the guidance of her parents at the age of 3. She is currently attending the Pre-College at the Mozarteum in Salzburg under the guidance of Pierre Amoyal, and studied with Giuliano Carmignola, Georg Egger, and Miriam Dal Don.


The jury comprised Robert Mealy, Colin Carr, Phoebe Carrai, Arthur Haas, and Ida Kavafian.


"A competition devoted to Bach is so special: his works are endlessly absorbing, and all of us learn something new each time we return to them," Robert Mealy said. "Of course, it's a lot of work to listen to all the entrants with open ears, but each of them has something to say, and you often find surprising illuminations into a piece you thought you knew thoroughly."


Previous first prize winners include violinists Rachell Ellen WongLun Li, and Tianyou Ma, plus cellist Maxime Quennesson.

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