Heifetz, Jascha(yä`shə hī`fĭts), 1901–87, Russian-American violinist, b. Vilna. He studied first with his father and in 1910 became a pupil of Leopold Auer at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, giving his first public concert the next year. After great success as a child prodigy in Europe, he immigrated to the United States in 1917. Heifetz became an even greater artist in his mature years, combining brilliantly reasoned, tranquil interpretation with unsurpassed virtuoso technique. He arranged a number of works for the violin and commissioned several concertos from contemporary composers.
(Iosif Robertovich Kheifets). Born Jan. 20 (Feb. 2), 1901, in Vil’na (Vilnius). American violinist.
Heifetz studied the violin with E. Ia. Malkin in Vilnius from 1905 to 1909. At the age of six, he gave a public performance of Mendelssohn’s Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in Kaunas. In 1910 he began studying with L. S. Auer in St. Petersburg, where he gave a concert in 1911; in 1912 he performed as a child prodigy in Berlin. Heifetz emigrated to the USA in 1917. He has toured extensively; in 1934 he toured in the USSR.
Heifetz’s playing combines a full, richly colored tone and a consummate virtuoso technique with a scrupulously conceived and balanced musical interpretation. Heifetz became a professor at the University of Southern California at Los Angeles in 1959. He has transcribed many works for the violin.
REFERENCESIampol’skii, I. “la. Kheifets.” Sovetskaia muzyka, 1934, no. 6.
Raaben, L. Zhizn’ zamechatel’nykh skripachei. [Moscow-Leningrad, 1967.]
Hartnack, J. W. Grosse Geiger unserer Zeit. Gütersloh .
Axelrod, H. Heifetz. New York, 1976.
I. M. IAMPOL’SKII