“Violinist Stefan Milenkovich’s recital at the Kennedy Center was so disarmingly magical that it is not easy to describe its glories. This is not so much a matter of a dazzling virtuosity (though he has it all) as of searching musicianship.” —WASHINGTON POST
“A bit of luxury casting . . . [Milenkovich] seemed to celebrate his Slavic origins with special relish in a delightful reading.” —THE NEW YORK TIMES, James Oestreich [from “This Weeks 8 Best Classical Music Moments”]
“Milenkovich has it all: the beauty of sound of David Oistrakh, the clarity and logic of phrasing of Henryk Szeryng, the virtuosity of Jascha Heifetz, the love of music of Yehudi Menuhin and the humor and joy of Itzhak Perlman.” —HANNOVERSCHE ZEITUNG, Germany
“Stefan Milenkovich has remarkable control over his instrument and is blessed with superb intonation and what seems like a limitless capacity for sustaining a big, broad, smooth line.” —LOS ANGELES TIMES
“Milenkovich is a star, and that's something that comes along only a few times in a century . . . I know magic when I hear it.” —THE INDIANAPOLIS STAR
“A remarkable player with fabulous technical acumen and stunning musicality. He brought depth, feeling and intensely focused direction to his performance . . . as gorgeously lyrical as it was dramatic.” —SALT LAKE MAGAZINE
Established as one of the great violinists of his generation, Stefan Milenkovich enjoys a prolific career as an internationally sought-after soloist and recitalist, with an extraordinary productivity, professionalism and creativity.
Milenkovich’s awards include “Serbia’s Artist of the Century,” “Most Humane Person,” and “Brand Personality of the Year.”
He has appeared on multiple occasions in some of the world’s most celebrated venues such as Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, London’s Cadogan Hall, Tokyo’s Suntory Hall, as well as Italy’s theatres La Fenice (Venice) and San Carlo (Naples). His 2016-17 season included some 50 concerts in Italy alone.
Milenkovich’s 2016-17 season included performances with Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano Giuseppe Verdi (Italy), Orchestra Haydn Bolzano (Italy), Odessa Philharmonic Orchestra (Ukraine), Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Lake Forest Symphony Orchestra (USA), and Orchestra Filarmonica Marchigiana (Italy). Recent performances include collaboration with Utah Symphony Orchestra (USA), Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra (USA), Mississippi Symphony Orchestra (USA), Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra (Slovenia), Orchestra I Virtuosi Italiani (Italy), as well as performances with baritone Nathan Gunn and mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard.
His numerous appearances with orchestra include the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Berlin Symphony Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Aspen Chamber Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic, NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of Radio-France, Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra, National Orchestra of Belgium, Mexico State Symphony, Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo (Brazil), and the Melbourne and Queensland Symphonies (Australia). He has performed under the baton of such conductors as Sir Neville Marriner, Lorin Maazel, Vladimir Fedoseyev, and Daniel Oren.
Milenkovich started his career at a very young age. He performed for U.S. President Ronald Reagan at a Christmas concert in Washington, DC, at age 10. The following year, he played for Mikhail Gorbachev in Belgrade, Serbia. At age 14, he played for Pope John Paul II and at age 16, Milenkovich gave his 1000th concert in Monterrey, Mexico. By age 17, he was the winner of The Young Concert Artists International Competition (USA), as well as a prizewinner in the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis (USA), the Queen Elisabeth Competition (Belgium), Hannover Violin Competition (Germany), Tibor Varga Competition (Switzerland), Rodolfo Lipizer Competition (Italy), Paganini Competition (Italy), Ludwig Spohr Competition (Germany), and the Yehudi Menuhin Competition (England).
Deeply committed to international humanitarian causes, in 2002 Milenkovich received the Lifting Up the World With Oneness Heart award for his humanitarian activities, handed to him personally by the guru Sri Chinmoy. He also participated in a number of gala concerts under the auspices of UNESCO in Paris with such artists as Placido Domingo, Lorin Maazel, Alexis Weissenberg, and Sir Yehudi Menuhin, and was active as the First Child Ambassador during the Balkan wars in early 90’s.
A musician of broad stylistic interests, Milenkovich performed with five-time GRAMMY-nominated rock band Gorillaz in the Apollo Theater in Harlem, a critically acclaimed performance that was featured live on MTV. Recent collaborations include performances with Grammy Award Nominee lutenist Edin Karamazov, as well as a musical partnership with guitarist Vlatko Stefanovski and his trio, where Milenkovich explored the realm of improvisation and acoustic-electric violin.
Milenkovich’s discography includes four commercial releases of the Italian label Dynamic, featuring J. S. Bach Complete Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin, Complete Music for Solo Violin–Nicolo Paganini 24 Caprices, Paganini Recital, and Paganini’s In cuor più non mi sento. He also released numerous recordings for the Yugoslavian label PGP. Milenkovich’s recent CD release includes a First Recording disc with the Manchester Music Festival of Vittorio Giannini’s Piano Trio and Piano Quintet.
Firmly dedicated to pedagogical work, Milenkovich taught in collaboration with Itzhak Perlman at the Juilliard School in New York City, NY, and Perlman Music Program, before accepting his current position as an Associate Professor of Violin at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Milenkovich is the youngest graduate of the Music Academy in Belgrade, Serbia, finishing his Masters' studies at 19 years of age, and completed the Professional Studies program at the Juilliard School in New York City, NY under the tutelage of Dorothy DeLay.
Milenkovich plays the 1783 Giovanni Battista Guadagnini violin.