Critical Acclaim

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“One of the miracles and mysteries of music is how the exceptionally gifted young performer can renew the art by making you hear unexpected things in music you've known longer than they've been alive, by making you feel the music as freshly and intensely as you did when you were first discovering it. Violinist Stefan Jackiw can do this.”

- Boston Globe

"[Stefan Jackiw] could be a legend in the making. He has everything he needs to make an exceptional career for himself – flawless technique, precocious musical understanding, and a sweet, singing tone."

- Chicago Tribune

"You’d have to go back several generations to find a violinist to compare to Stefan Jackiw, because there’s almost no one today who is in his league. His recital brought to mind the great players of past eras, which is not to say that he sounds like Heifetz or Milstein but that he embraces the same honesty, purity, and directness. He makes music in a way that is wholly his own. If anyone was wondering whether Jackiw’s unspeakably beautiful Tchaikovsky Concerto here last season was a fluke, this recital exploded that idea. I’ve heard hundreds of violinists in my lifetime, and presently there is not one I would rather listen to than this Boston-born 22-year-old.”

- Kansas City Star

“Barely into his 20s, Jackiw plays with the incisiveness and exquisite taste of an Old World, long-seasoned fiddler."

- Baltimore Sun

"This is a young star of astonishing gifts, whose musicality and technical finesse place him at the top of his peers."

- Seattle Times

"[Jackiw] could be a rock star. And he tears into Tchaikovsky like a rock star might if a rock star could. Jackiw's was a fascinating, impressive and often riveting performance. Jackiw made each phrase an individual and excitable event. There can't be much doubt that Jackiw's star will continue to rise."

- Los Angeles Times

"Jackiw combines expressive elegance, tonal purity and spot-on intonation. He is a nimble musician who traverses the violin as if impediments didn't exist."

- Cleveland Plain Dealer

"Jackiw is without doubt a star of the future."

- Cincinnati Enquirer

"... the kind of triumph of personality you wanted to cheer... [Jackiw has] a sound so saturated and vibrant it sounded like a living thing."

- Philadelphia Inquirer

"Stefan Jackiw has risen swiftly in the past decade to challenge the foremost talents of our day - Ehnes, Tezlaff, Kavakos, Hahn - by the quality of his insight and skill. He played Mozart like an angel. The result was about as pure and as close to perfection as music can get."

- The Globe and Mail

"Soloist and young phenom Stefan Jackiw got [the Beethoven Violin Concerto] right: The downbeats were alive and electric, a bloom on the tone or a subtle syncopated emphasis pushing the line forward. Jackiw’s technique is prodigious, his intonation precise, but his playing is striking for its intelligence and sensitivity.”

- Boston Globe

"Jackiw made a sensational impression on Thursday evening, performing the Saint-Saens Violin Concerto No. 3 with Gerard Schwarz and the [Seattle Symphony]. The young player is a powerhouse of a violinist with a big rich tone and a lot of technical assurance.

But he isn’t just a speedy-fingered prodigy. Jackiw made the most of his interpretive opportunities, especially in the second movement, with its lovely melodic line. Clad in a black shirt and black slacks, Jackiw played with exceptional clarity and maturity.”

- Seattle Times

"Most impressive debut [of 2004]”

- Seattle Times

"Jackiw was astonishing. Get out the superlatives and take your pick: huge technical resources; dead center pitch, even at the highest register of the instrument; a tone both silky and steely; a bow arm of great strength and control; breathtaking clarity, even in the fastest passages; a myriad of colors and dynamic values. For someone so young, his talent is remarkably complete, his musicality strikingly mature. Like many young virtuosos, he likes fast tempos, and he took the final movement very quickly. But he made sense of the speed.”

- Seattle Post-Intelligencer

"Such soaring beauty of tone, such strength and purity of feeling, that this hardened listener burst into tears.”

- Boston Globe

“Talent That’s Off The Scale”

- Washington Post

“Listening to the apparently endless parade of expert, teenage violinists passing through our concert halls, you'd be hard-pressed to find one with a more consistently beautiful sound than 19-year-old Stefan Jackiw.

His reading of Saint-Saens's Violin Concerto No. 3, with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at the Music Center at Strathmore on Thursday, was marked by elegance, a supple, singing line and a liquid tone that never hardened, even in the score's bravura passages. This was gorgeous playing – from the spot-on precision in the first movement's stratospheric high notes through the poise and nobility imbuing the swaggering finale.”

- Washington Post

"It’s tough for a youngster to make a strong first impression with the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, with countless versions by a century of great violinists ringing in our ears. But at Friday’s local debut by 20-year-old Stefan Jackiw, who is on tour with the Moscow State Symphony, it was obvious that we were in the presence of a magnificent new talent.

[Jackiw’s] was some of the most debonair, impassioned, pitch-accurate and sophisticated violin playing I’ve heard in quite a while.”

- Kansas City Star

“Stefan Jackiw made a strong impression with the orchestra [Baltimore Symphony under Gunther Herbig] in Samuel Barber’s Violin Concerto, Op 14. The 21-year-old American violinist’s weeping tone and spot-on intonation made you wonder whether this was what it was like to hear a Perlman or a Stern in his early years. Jackiw’s playing was by turns passionate, precise, and unflagging.”

- Washington Post

“Jackiw lives up to his promise in BSO [Boston Symphony] debut”

“The Mendelssohn was remarkable for long and singing line, fabulous intonation, effortlessly sparkling virtuosity, and imaginative shaping of phrases and dynamics; Jackiw’s bow arm left violinists in the audience awe-struck and envious. One listens to him with gratitude because in his hands, familiar music once again becomes fresh and personal.”

- Boston Globe

"[Jackiw] conquered all its [Sibelius Violin Concerto’s] formidable technical challenges, even those daunting ascending scales in multiple stops in the finale. His rhythm is taut, his intonation secure even across the widest leaps; he can make the violin sing, but he can also make it speak."

“What is more important than technique, which can be acquired by diligence, is insight, and that can’t be learned. This is Jackiw’s greatest gift. When he plays, it is not all about him, or all about the violin – it is all about the music. He knows what he wants to do with every phrase, and some of it is marked by heartstopping purity of intent.”

- Boston Globe

"Jackiw hit gold right from the violin’s opening bars, so even in tone, clean in articulation, the phrases forming one long line of glorious song. He felt every note deeply and wisely, never brushed away the orchestra, and never shouted ‘Me! Me! Me!’ The virtuoso displays were tossed off with awesome ease. Even more impressive though, was Jackiw’s simplicity and honesty. He knows how to feel, how to be simple and how to be quiet.”

- The Times [London]

"A performance of real integrity. His technical prowess was never in doubt, with his sure intonation and seamless negotiation of Mendelssohn’s transparent violin writing. The way Jackiw paced the bravura showpiece of the first movement’s cadenza illustrated his virtuoso technique and natural musicality."

- The Guardian

"Not only was his technique serenely confident, but his tone pure and piercingly sweet,his harmonics bell-like, his phrasing pristine and faultless. With all the virtues mentioned, Jackiw further proved to be a lovely, innocent musician […] brilliantly skillful and selflessly musical.”

- Financial Times

"This American-born violinist gave a performance of the Mendelssohn E minor Violin Concerto that was truly sensational, showing a talent and maturity that belied his years.”

- The Strad

“[Jackiw] does not deliver a preconceived interpretation, glazed and showy, but seems to invent it as he goes along. His sound is intimately detailed and apparently delicate, yet easily fills the hall. His technique, of course, is masterful.”

- The Sunday Times [London]