Editorial: Violin winner should have shaken hands

Editorial: Violin winner should have shaken hands

A storm is still raging over the refusal of the Queen Elisabeth Competition winner, the Ukrainian violinist Dmytro Udovychenko, to shake the hand of one of the judges, the Russian violinist Vadim Repin.

Udovychenko, 24, is acutely aware that his parents are under Russian bombardment in Kharkiv.

Repin and his dancer wife are supporters and beneficiaries of Vladimir Putin.

On the face of it, the contestant has every right to make a protest.

However, over the previous weeks, Udovychenko was content to have his performances judged by a panel that included Repin. When the result was announced he was happy to accept the prize, with Repin’s involvement. It is only a matter of courtesy to thank those who have elevated you above the rest of the pack.

Not to do so is not just rude. It diminishes the humanity of the musical event.

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