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    RUSSIA: YOUNG COMPOSERS' FESTIVAL FINISHES, SUNDAY

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    MOSCOW, FEBRUARY 26, RIA NOVOSTI - A second national festival, Russia's Youth Academies, is closing at Moscow's posh Tchaikovsky Concert Hall, February 29, a Novosti news conference announced this afternoon.

    Based in Moscow, Kazan-Tatar republican capital on the Volga, and Yekaterinburg in the Urals, the festival brought together under- and postgraduates who are studying composition in Russian higher music schools. The Symphony Orchestra of the Moscow Philharmonic Society and Russia's other foremost orchestras offered memorable renditions of their endeavours.

    "To foster new Russian music elite is our principal goal. This country has many gifted beginner composers, and they need their chance to be heard," said Professor Alexander Tchaikovsky, festival art director, symbolically related to 19th century classic Peter Tchaikovsky.

    All festival concerts have gathered full houses to show tremendous public interest in contemporary music of the academic trend, he remarked.

    The current festival has gathered 24 young composers, as against a mere twelve at a first, December 2002, said Ksenia Mikulik, festival manager.

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