About the Malko Competition

By Lars Grunth

The Russian conductor and excellent orchestral trainer Nicolai Malko stood in front of the very young Radio Symphony Orchestra for the first time in 1929, and together with his conductor colleague Fritz Busch he brought the orchestra up to a high international level in the course of the 1930's and the early post war years. After Malko's death in 1961, the Radio Symphony Orchestra and Malko's widow Berthe Malko joined forces and instigated an international conducting competition in memory of him. The competition was held for the first time in 1965 and its international importance for young conductors' careers has been steadily growing ever since, in the strength of the number of excellent prize winners, who have acquired important positions in the international music life.

Therefore the competition today is more alive than ever, and especially thanks to the Danish National Symphony Orchestra's never tiring effort to uphold and heighten the already high artistic level, the Nicolai Malko Competition today is one of the few international competitions that can really launch a young conductor's career.

Lars Grunth, former Music Director at Tivoli.