Growing up near Boulder, Colorado, Yuri would improvise songs, sometimes singing for hours. For him, music was the essence of life.
Born in Stavropol, Russia, Yuri and his younger brother Vladislav immigrated to the United States in 2000 with their mother to avoid anti-semitic persecution. When Yuri began studying violin and piano his musical ability was instantly recognized. Hearing Yuri and his brother, a local piano teacher, Shirley Gendreizig, offered to instruct them both on full scholarship. Every so often, Yuri would bring a large stack of his compositions to his lessons.
The accolades soon followed. At seventeen, Yuri won the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award. At nineteen, he was awarded a scholarship at Michigan's prestigious Interlochen Center for the Arts.
Now a senior at Juilliard, Yuri has already accomplished more than many artists do in a lifetime. He has been commissioned by the Moscow String Quartet, the Temple de l'Oratoire du Louvre, and the Kronos String Quartet and performed at the Aspen Music Festival and Tanglewood. To encourage others, Yuri teaches underprivileged students in East Harlem and the Bronx. Yuri and his brother are in the process of assembling the Like Philharmonic, an orchestra of young musicians.