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Lilian Hochhauser and her late husband Victor Hochhauser

The Victor and Lilian Hochhauser Foundation pledges £500K to support scholarships

Friday 23 July 2021

Supporting Royal College of Music scholarships for the next seven years, the Victor and Lilian Hochhauser Foundation pledges £500,000.

The Foundation will award five scholarships for students from the UK, plus one scholarship for an international student, per academic year. Students studying full-time for both undergraduate and postgraduate programmes will be eligible.

Alongside her husband, Victor, who passed away in 2019, Lilian Hochhauser CBE FRCM has been one of the foremost promoters of classical music and ballet in Britain. Since the Cold War, the Hochhausers have introduced some of the Soviet Union’s most celebrated artists to the West, including the Mariinsky Ballet and Opera, the Bolshoi Ballet and Opera, the Borodin Quartet, Sviatoslav Richter, David Oistrakh and Mstislav Rostropovich, among many others.

‘My whole working life, and that of my late husband Victor, was devoted to the simple and overarching ambition of giving the widest audiences exposure to the greatest musicians,’ says Lilian.

The new scholarships continue this work of supporting great performers. ‘Without new infusions of carefully nurtured talent, the vitality and brilliance of our musical life is under threat. We need a new generation of talented young musicians to be able to access the finest training possible. We want the holders of the scholarships to be able to build their expertise in a milieu in which they can be maximally creative and have the freedom to try new directions, without the constant stress brought on by the need to find sources of support.’

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With the impact of the pandemic on the arts, the Foundation’s support is timely. ‘The devastating effects have, of course, been predominantly the tragic toll on human life and health. But the effects on our cultural life, and particularly on music, have been exceptionally damaging,’ explains Lilian. ‘The essential removal of live musical events, the core of this tradition, has been destructive not only in the short term but also provides deep challenges in the long term for the next generation of musicians.’

A committed supporter of the RCM for many years, Lilian was previously a Committee Member during the RCM’s Centenary Appeal in 1986 and was appointed a Fellow of the RCM in 1991. ‘I have always been an admirer and supporter of the RCM because of the greatness it represents and the talent it nurtures,’ she says.

‘Our success over a seventy-year working life has been in large part because of the vision and vitality of the RCM. The Victor and Lilian Hochhauser Foundation aims to support musical life – which has been the centre of our life. That is why we have established these scholarships, and we feel both privileged and proud to be able to join the RCM in this exciting venture.’