Dubravka Tomšič Srebotnjak – Slovenia
I am extremely pleased that Slovenia, and more precisely Ljubljana, will at last have an International Piano Competition.
It is an honour for me to be president of an international jury at the first Festival Ljubljana International Piano Competition in February 2023. I hope and expect that the competition will be successful and that gradually it will become one of the great, prestigious world piano competitions.
The Slovenian pianist and Emeritus Professor Dubravka Tomšič Srebotnjak has for many years been considered Slovenia’s No. one cultural ambassador. This exceptional musician is the first lady amongst Slovenian musicians in promoting Slovenian pianism to all parts of the World.
Ms. Tomšič began her piano studies at age 4 with Zora Zarnik in Ljubljana. At age twelve she continued her studies in the USA at the famous Juilliard School in New York, with Katherine Bacon, and at seventeen she graduated with distinction and two special prizes. She then spent two years studying with the famous pianist Arthur Rubinstein. She gave her first public recital at age of 5 in Dubrovnik and from then onwards has not stopped performing for 77 years. Her magnificent piano career with over 5,000 concerts has taken her to the most prestigious world concert halls on all continents, performing in recitals, at important music festivals and as soloist with major, great orchestras and famous conductors.
Her repertoire includes works for piano from the Baroque to the 21st century and around 50 piano concertos. She has made recordings for important radio and television stations around the world. Since 1987 her playing has been recorded on almost 100 CDs by different record labels. In 2003 she won the “Grand Prix du Disque” from Budapest’s Liszt Ferenc Society for the CD of the year featuring works by Franz Liszt.
As a young pianist she won many international piano competitions and is now a jury member of many important international piano competitions throughout the world. She has been teaching at the Ljubljana Academy of Music since 1966. In 2013 the University of Ljubljana conferred upon her the title of Emeritus Professor.
Ms. Tomšič has also held masterclasses throughout Europe and the USA. For her artistic achievements she has received numerous prizes and awards both at home and abroad, including the Prešeren Prize, Župančič Prize, Golden Lyre, Avnoj award, Golden medal of St. Fortunatus Mainz, Order of Merit for the Nation with silver rays, Golden plaque of the University of Ljubljana, Orlando Award for 1978 and 2005 (Dubrovnik Summer Festival).
Since 1995 she has been an honorary member of the Slovenian Philharmonic and in 2005 she became Honorary Citizen of Ljubljana. On December 1, 2015, the University of Ljubljana proclaimed her a Honorary Senator for her important contribution to the international reputation of the University of Ljubljana. In 2018 the President of the Republic of Slovenia, Borut Pahor, conferred on her the Golden Order of Merit for her life’s work and an exceptional opus of performances in Slovenia and in the world.