In 1976, Nelly Berman immigrated to the United States from Odessa, the former Soviet Union, as a single mother and piano teacher with two children, $17 in her pocket, and a suitcase full of music scores. A gifted piano teacher, Nelly passionately loved classical music and wanted to teach children who love music to play on a professional level, regardless of their future careers. She dreamed that classical music in America would one day be as celebrated as much as sports, if not more so, as it was in her former homeland of Russia.
In 1995, Nelly founded the NBS Classical Music Institute, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with a mission to provide merit-based scholarships to students as well as to bring high level classical music concerts and competitions to the community. The “Young Classical Virtuosos of Tomorrow” competition was her creation. The Nelly Berman School revived the competition this year in Nelly’s memory, and it is now hailed as “one of the top classical music competitions on the east coast” by the distinguished panel of judges, representing the Philadelphia and New York Philharmonic Orchestras, several prominent university music programs and schools, and international performing artists.
On Sunday, June 18th, the Nelly Berman School of Music and the NBS Classical Music Institute will present the Gold and Platinum winners of the “Young Classical Virtuosos of Tomorrow” International Music Competition in concert at the Perelman Theater of the Kimmel Center. Gold winners will perform in the 10:00 am concert, and Platinum winners will perform in the 3:00 pm concert featuring guest performer Derek Barnes, cellist of the Philadelphia Orchestra.