Jascha Heifetz
Date of Birth
Feb 02, 1899
Birth Place:
Vilnius, Russia


A child prodigy, Russian-born violinist Jascha Heifetz gave his first public performance at age five. Six years later, he was enrolled in the St. Petersburg Conservatory, and two years after that he presented his first formal concert. Fleeing Russia after the 1917 Revolution, he reestablished his reputation with several world tours in the early '20s, finally settling down in Beverly Hills in 1925. Being in such close proximity to Hollywood, it was perhaps inevitable that he would be peripherally involved in the film industry. In addition to a handful of short subjects, he starred in 1939's They Shall Have Music, producer Sam Goldwyn's well-meaning attempt to bring culture with a capital "C" to the masses. Eight years later, Heifetz was one of a myriad of concert artists who made guest appearances in Carnegie Hall. In addition, he was married for 17 years to silent screen star Florence Vidor. Touring as a soloist until 1974, Jascha Heifetz also taught gifted music pupils at the University of Southern California-Los Angeles from 1962 to 1972. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

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