Get Classical > Testimonials



Jon Kimura Parker

Pianist, Artistic Director Honens International Piano Competition

“What a pleasure to make the acquaintance of Ilona Oltuski, whose love of music and comprehensive knowledge informs everything that she writes. I especially admire the work she does in schools. Bravo Ilona!”

David Krakauer & Kathleen Tagg

Clarinetist and Piano Duo

A big thanks to Ilona and Get Classical for the wonderful in-depth article about our work! This included our new work: Breath & Hammer II- The Ties that Bind Us for the Pierre Boulez Saal in Berlin, as well as coverage of the From Shtetl to Stage concert at Carnegie Hall as part of the Migrations Series. It is rare today to see a writer who will delve so deeply into a story and look at multiple levels of connection- Thanks so much Ilona for your time and great passion!!

Matthew Graybill


Whether interviewing one of today’s leading artists, bolstering the career of a young musician or curating her cool and casual salon series, Ilona’s remarkable knowledge, imagination and love of music
make her one of the most unique and pertinent figures in NYC’s musical culture.

Nicolas Namoradze

pianist, composer, transcriber

I had an engaging, wide-ranging conversation with Ilona that touched on many important and interesting topics, often overlooked in interview. Her perceptive questions are informed by her unique insight, knowledge and understanding. All of this came across beautifully written, in the wonderful, interesting profile she wrote. A big Thank You to GetClassical!

Filip Pogady, violinist

I had such a great time chatting with Ilona over dinner in Berlin. She is one of the warmest and funniest journalists I have ever had the pleasure of working with, without losing focus on the things that matter. Her articles are informative, entertaining and at the same time founded on a deep understanding of classical music and it’s business. I wish “GetClassical” all the very best!

Amit Peled, cellist

Dear Ilona, Thank you for making time for the interview. It was absolutely a joy to dive with you into my artistic journey and to feel so welcomed by your warmth, knowledge and personality. What I thought would be another ‘casual’ interview became a two hours fun and friendly discussion that magically – by you – brought out all I had to say and more, thank you, Amit

Asiya Korepanova, pianist, arranger, composer, poet, visual artist and educator

My first art exhibit in the US, a certain milestone in my career arose after I met Ilona Oltuski – one of those rare people who are able to bring together very diverse people of illustrious talents and different areas of expertise, create friendships with passionate artistic minds, recognize them in a blink of an eye and work incredibly hard to support them. While working on an insightful profile on me, she encouraged me to dig deeper and talk about my artwork in addition to my music and as a result helped me think of ways to present my visual art to a wider audience. Thank you for this special experience!

Shai Wosner

Pianist, Composer

It’s a great pleasure to be featured on GetClassical, both a casual and informative source for classical music lovers!
Ilona is wonderful to talk to about music and life!

Eleonor Bindman

Pianist, Transcriber, Composer

What a pleasure to be interviewed by someone with such keen insight into musicians’ world! Ilona managed to uncover and distill the essential elements of my work by her sincere and intelligent questions. GetClassical is a gift to musicians and music lovers alike!

Konstantin Soukhovetski

Pianist, Designer, Entrepreneur

GetClassical is pretty much on the frontier of the emerging trend among music lovers: informal and informative, inspiring and entertaining. The casual club setting and a sense of spontaneity is what makes people return for more and more of the ‘downtown’ experience of music with GetClassical. It is in that same atmosphere, Ilona captures the essence of artists in her writing and introducing her performers to new audiences. And having first-rate talent seals the deal on this delightful new cultural venture in New York City.

David Finckel and Wu Han

Cellist and Pianist. Artistic Directors of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Music@Menlo, ArtistLed

“Heartfelt thanks to Ilona for her thoughtful writing presented from the unique perspective of a passionate music lover.” – David Finckel and Wu Han

The Emerson String Quartet

Dear Ilona,

This is a wonderful article. Thanks so much for putting so much thought and time into writing it. This is truly a historic collaboration and it’s very nice to have someone recognize that and write about it so well.

All the best,

Rob Kapilow

What makes it Great host, composer, author, radio personality

Being interviewed by Ilona was an absolute delight! What was so special about it was that it didn’t even seem to be an interview at all. Simply a wonderful conversation with a deeply knowledgeable musician about ideas and thoughts that intrigued us both. I cannot remember ever having had such an in-depth interview with such a prepared, thoughtful partner–and Ilona was really a partner in the process. Her approach is unique in today’s musical world, and I feel lucky to have shared time with such a thoughtful, inspiring musician. Anyone would be lucky to be interviewed by her!

All best,

Orpheus Chamber Orchestra

We were thrilled to see Orpheus so accurately represented by in Ilona’s wonderfully thorough and sensitively written blogpost. It’s rare to be interviewed by someone like Ilona—someone who comes in already intimately acquainted with the culture of Orpheus, an interviewer who “gets” what we do and whose questions come from a place of genuine curiosity about what we do—past, present and future. is the perfect vehicle for the 21st century music lover and musician.

Llewellyn Sanchez-Werner


Ilona’s wholehearted dedication to the arts makes a profound impact on our performing community. through thoughtful articles, interviews, and by fostering innovative performance atmospheres, she provides artists additional platforms to communicate meaningfully with their audiences. In doing so, she facilitates a broadening of the audience for classical music, while nurturing a side of our industry that is consistently in need of further nourishment.

Susan Wadsworth

Founder, Director Young Concert Artists

I was so happy with your exceptional article about Young Concert Artists.. You captured every iota of the spirit of the organization in an articulate and warm way. It is fun to come to your events too -\
off the beaten track and yet fully connected to the spirit of great music.
All best Susan

Karén Hakobyan

Pianist, composer, conductor, Founder Pegasus: The Orchestra

Ilona Oltuski’s professionalism and insight in her recent column, Pegasus: The Orchestra – Cultural Incubator of Community became the lift beneath our mythical horse’s wings as the orchestra gave its New York and New Jersey premieres. We thank her for the depth and breadth of the article, in particular; for her longtime and passionate support of musical endeavors and musicians everywhere; and especially for her dedication to rising artists.

Vyacheslav Gryaznov

Pianist, composer, transcriber

Ilona’s warmth and kindness toward me was so inviting when I came to the United States last year! I am so honored and grateful that she chose to attend my recent performance in New York and that she devoted her time and energy to an interview with me. Her questions let me know that her interest was genuine, and her journalism reflected a great understanding and love for both the music and what we as artists work for, to bring it to life.

Natasha Cherny

Natasha Cherny Founder and Co-President, The Drozdoff Society Producer, Impromptu! Classical Music Recital Series

When I first became aware of Ilona Oltuski’s GetClassical series, I wondered if perhaps here was a kindred spirit. Now, as a frequent reader of her discerning journalism and a follower of her concerts, I am truly impressed with her devotion to musicians, her intelligent and informed writing, and her infectious enthusiasm. She is not only an ally in the arts, but also a role model.

Inon Barnatan


“It was such a pleasure talking to Ilona and having an interview that was as exhaustive and intelligent as it was readable and entertainingly written. Music journalism is becoming a rare art and it’s nice to know it is in good hands.”

Andreas Kern


Dear Ilona,

“We love your Blog Get Classical. Every month we are curious to read your interviews, your tips for classical hot spots and to get more classical :-). We also appreciated your interview with us and hope to see you, Ilona, in one of our next shows in the US“ PIANO BATTLE

Warm wishes, Andreas

Elisaveta Blumina


Dear Ilona,

Thank you very much again for your article which is spot on. You are a remarkable woman with a rare intuition, a wonderful humor and curiosity about unknown composers. I have never had the experience of such an article about me, you know the music world and seem to understand me even when I am only saying a half sentence.
Your optimism is very contagious and I am very happy to have met you.
Elisaveta Blumina

Lily Maisky


It was a memorable and a very fun experience getting to perform in a less conventional venue for classical music in New York thanks to Ilona and her GetClassical concerts. I find it great that she brings such events to a wider audience; in this day and age of adaptation and evolution such initiatives are of great importance. All the best of luck for the future!

Mischa Maisky


My firsthand experience with GetClassical’s mission and passionately presented music endeavors ranks very high. The personal rapport with in support of us artists is excellent and enjoyable. Wishing all the best to Ilona and GetClassical.

Mischa Maisky

Daniele Rinaldo


I met Ilona in NYC after a recital I played there in 2014, and we had a lovely interview where I talked about myself and my activities and she enthusiastically described her GetClassical project. We both agreed on the necessity to reach audiences beyond the traditional concert hall ones, both by choice of repertoire and venue, and by keeping a mind as open on all possible musical influences and try to overcome traditional genre barriers. I very much appreciated her article on my performance as well as her attitude towards music and her commitment to GetClassical. I am very glad to see how well it’s developing! All the best, hope to see you soon!

Richard Waterman

Real Piano

Ilona is a true music lover …a musical warrior working in the trenches to create new avenues for fan and artist to come together. Ilona has earned respect and admiration for her work in the New York music scene to create a new kind of intimate artist/fan concert experience. We share a common vision with Ilona in her desire to bring artist and fans closer. We create Artist Gallery pages to give fans an up close and personal web experience with their musical heroes – while Ilona has gone even further to create intimate salon concerts where artist and fan can mingle before and after a performance with no stage barrier. We salute Ilona Oltuski…a true piano lover dedicated to making a difference! Bravo!

Theodore Wiprud

Composer, Concert Presenter, Educator, and Music Executive

I loved GetClassical’s presentation of my music at the chic Zinc Bar – it’s wonderful hearing music in a club atmosphere. And also Ilona’s discerning blog post about my work with pianist Yoonie Han, which reached lots of readers.

Gerard Schwarz

Conductor, Educator, Producer

I have had the great pleasure to see first hand the remarkable work Ilona does; presenting concerts, interviewing artists and writing about music. Her musical knowledge is extensive and her charm and brilliance are always apparent in her writing on musical subjects and her interaction with artists. She is very special in so many ways, but it is especially gratifying to have a real music lover producing concerts and reporting on music.

Donal Fox

Composer, Pianist, Improviser Steinway Artist

Ilona is a fine writer and music journalist. She is very passionate about the arts and reaching new audiences for classical music. She is also an enthusiastic presenter and producer with indefatigable energy and infectious optimism. Ilona and GetClassical have built a robust community of artists, music lovers and fans through her website, blog posts, reviews, interviews, writings, radio broadcasts, concerts and events. Keep up the great work Ilona! It as a pleasure meeting you being interviewed by you!

Adam Golka


I was honored to be featured in an interview by Ilona, for GetClassical. I genuinely enjoyed her interview style and thoughtful questions that resulted in a very individual, unique perspective of the artist, and in an article to remember.

With best wishes, and hoping to collaborate again in the near future.

Sivan Magen


I would like to thank Ilona Oltuski for choosing to interview me for Get Classical, for the highly informed article she wrote about me, and for the time and energy she invested in the interview. It was a pleasure to meet a woman of such high culture, and I am continuously impressed by how far Get Classical has developed under her leadership in such a short time. I wish her success in all the upcoming adventures.

Matthew Graybil


Whether interviewing one of today’s leading artists, bolstering the carrier of a young musician or curating her cool and casual salon series GetClassical, Ilona’s remarkable knowledge, imagination and love of music make her one of the most unique and pertinent figures in NYC’s mucical culture.

Eric Zuber

Pianist, Educator

My experience performing at GetClassical was an unforgettable one. Ilona is one of the leaders in reshaping how we view the concert experience, and the importance of this work cannot be overstated. Her vision – a concert experience for the audience that is dynamic, personal, and intimate, all while being great fun and a learning experience – is one that I share passionately and hope to promote through my own work. Bravo Ilona! Thank s again 🙂

Erno Kallai


Ilona was the first in New York who featured me and my former teacher, Itzhak Perlman, together in an article. That will always remain a very special interview for me, and I will never forget it. Wish you all the best with the Get Classical blog, and to continue the fantastic work you are doing.

Alexandra Joan


What Ilona does for the classical music world with GetClassical, is what artists and their audiences need the most. She creates unique opportunities and brings people together in great settings with the highest standards of quality. She has the flair, the taste, the enthusiasm, the creativity, the knowledge from being a pianist herself and the generosity to make those events magical.

John and Noretta Leech

Educator, Founding Director of the Keyboard Trust

On behalf of all the Keyboard Trust’s artists you have so liberally helped on their way, we want to salute your glorious initiative GetClassical. You have made great strides to resolve the imaginary social divide which deters so many young people from venturing into our sacred halls of music. And your richly woven interviews and concert reviews have been an immense support to the artists, fortunate enough to be featured. An affectionate and resounding Thank-you from Noretta and John.

Yuja Wang


My manager and I loved your article and thought it was one of the best we have ever read. It’s on my website now.

David Aladashvili


GetClassical “gets” new audiences and proves that classical music can take place anywhere, and can be loved by anyone! Ilona Oltuski’s devotion, sincere love for music expressiveness inspires us musicians, and reminds us why we do, what we do.

Ilya Itin

Pianist and Educator

Ilona Oltuski, the founder of GetClassical brings classical music concerts to new venues and new audiences. Her enthusiasm and creativity make the whole experience unlike anything else in the field.

Peter Rosen

Award Winning Film Maker

Ilona was one of the first to recognize the extra-musical aspects of my film on blind pianist Nobuyuko Tsjii, “Touching the sound”. Her focus on the power of music to change lives makes her work as a jounalist much more important than those, who just review musicians’ technique.

Jonathan Levin

Pianist, Composer, Arranger, Producer, Educator

Ilona Oltuski miraculously and elegantly brings 19th century values into the 21st century. As classical musicians and presenters worldwide are starting to see the growing importance of building new audiences and a fresh perspective on the traditional classical concert, GetClassical, while still young, is already at the forefront of New York City’s thriving concert scene. Presenting world-class artists from young up-and-comers to seasoned veterans, GetClassical is full of surprises, constantly delighting audiences with unique and innovative performers, events and ventures.


Violinist, Pianist

Being among the first ones to applaud these classical music’s Monty Pythons. Igudesman & Joo, virtuoso violinist Aleksey Igudesman and pianist extraordinaire Hyung-ki Joo l feel no further words are necessary. But nevertheless here is what Aleksey said: Ilona Oltuski’s is clearly a passionate writer and her insight and love of music makes it a pleasure to read her blogs and articles. She is insightful and always on the outlook for new talent, writing about our work even before it became widely known. Thank you!

Stefan Jackiw


Ilona is a thoughtful writer who brings musicians’ passions and convictions to life on the page.

Seda Roder

Pianist, Composer, Producer

GetClassical is a very valuable platform with a warmhearted and honest tone. Ms. Oltuski is an absolute aficcionado of the international music scene.

Lev “Ljova” Zhurbin

Violinist, Composer, Kontrabass

Thank you to Ilona Oltuski and for a wonderful review of our concert at National Sawdust! My work is not easily described in a sound bite, and I’m grateful to Ilona for capturing the moment beautifully. Ilona’s writing makes my work seem much more distinguished than I would have believed myself. I really felt like she understood where our music came from, our attempt to blend new and old music, to involve audiences of all ages – she really brought it together.

Lena Lisitian

Lena Lisitian

Ilona Oltuski creates musical events that combine historical and cultural context with highly relevant musical programming. The result is a unique collaboration between artists, creating beautiful and meaningful moments. It takes genuine imagination to create and great effort to realize this multi-layered collage. I was very fortunate to participate in one of these events, and I am looking forward to collaborate with Ilona – and GetClassical again.

Eric Jacobsen

Cellist, Conductor, Brooklyn Rider, Orlando Philharmonic

Dear Ilona, it’s always been a total pleasure to meet and speak with you. Your love of classical music is tangible and that gives us all hope!

All my best.

Eliran AvniArtistic Director and Pianist for SHUFFLE Concert

Artistic Director and Pianist for SHUFFLE Concert

GetClassical is exactly what the music world needs today: a fun and relaxed setting where folks can enjoy music. Ilona brings together the best artists, audiences and venues for what is truely a great musical celebration and a fun night out!

Gulsin Onay


Ilona Oltuski has created a new concept in her “GetClassical” series, bringing classical music to a wider audience, and adding a new dimension of engagement for artist and listener alike. It has been my privilege and joy to participate in this exciting project, and I wish her continuing succcess in her venture.

Paul Huang


The GetClassical series is undoubtedly a unique and fantastic jewel in the city. It provides a wonderful platform for artists to share their most intimate musical thoughts and expression. I salute Ilona’s dedication, enthusiasm, and support for the arts and look forward to seeing the growth of this series in many years to come.

David Kaplan


I SO much enjoyed performing in the amber glow of GetClassical, which keeps the tradition of intimate salon concerts alive. As a musician, it is inspiring to feel that a concert is a conversation rather than a speech, and the engaged and passionate audience made that possible!

At GetClassical, everyone becomes an artist: the audience and performers are equal collaborators in creating a special ambience; the music is enlivened by an amber glow of creativity and elegance. Thanks to the commitment and passion behind this wonderful platform, the tradition of the intimate salon concert is on very good hands. Everyone comes away with new friends, both human and musical.

Philip Edward Fisher


The experience of being interviewed by Ilona was an unforgettable one. Not only does she bring to the table a plethora of musical and pianistic knowledge, but also a natural and conversational style that draws you in, creating an environment for an open and honest dialogue!

Louis Schwizgebel-Wang


It was wonderful to perform at a recent GetClassical performance at Zinc Bar. Like with her insightful writing, which pulls the reader and the artist close, Iona Oltuski creates a powerful atmosphere in GetClassical concerts. In a friendly and personal way, she adds an exciting element to the classical concert experience. It was a great pleasure to be part of it.

Steven Lin


I had a great experience doing the interview with Ilona. I appreciated how she deeply understood the life of a musician. She was able to help me translate my approach and attitude towards music into words. Not many writers are able to do that!

Alissa Margulis


Thank you GetClassical for the unforgettable time and concert in New York!!! What a fantastic organization!

GetClassical is indeed a wonderful creation-it brings the greatest music and events to the public. Let’s all support this great idea, to create more unforgettable experiences, music unites!!!

Dorothy Dawson

Founding member of ETHEL(artistic director and cellist)

Ilona Oltuski contributes great energy to the pulse of Classical music in New York City, through her advocacy as a presenter and as an extremely articulate writer. She provides an essential, charismatic interface between artists and audiences, helping connect those most fundamental of collaborators.

Wishing you very well, always.

Ben Capps


The GetClassical blog & concert series is a diamond in the rough. Its creator, Ilona Oltuski, brings some of the world’s most refined musicians into a salon-type setting, allowing performers to interact with audiences throughout the performance. This unique and engaging format successfully bridges the gap between audience and performer.

Lara Downes

Pianist, Writer, Producer

Get Classical is exactly what is needed in NYC, and everywhere else for that matter! The brilliant move of presenting classical music in club and lounge venues that offer a relaxed and casual atmosphere, brings together an eclectic mix of listeners to enjoy the magic of live performance without the constraints and formalities of the traditional concerts hall. GetClassical curates a wide range of concerts, showcasing artists and repertoire that cross boundaries and explore varied musical directions. They all have one thing in common: the very highest artistic quality. Ilona has the vision to recognize that the present and the future of classical music depend on an embrace of what is, after all, at the heart of this art form: communication between artists and audiences; the emotional power of music in the moment; and the ever-evolving creative force that keeps classical music very much alive and thriving. I loved being part of the series, and look forward to the next opportunity!

Konstantin Soukhocetski

Pianist, Producer, Actor

Get Classical is pretty much on the frontier of the emerging trend among the music lovers: informal and informative, inspiring and entertaining. The casual club setting and a sense of spontaneity is what makes people return for more and more of the ‘downtown’ experience of music with Get Classical. And having the first-rate talent seals the deal of this delightful new cultural venture in New York City.

Gloriosa Trio

Jennifer Carsillo, vViolinist. Pianist Yoonie Han and Cellist Kevin Bate

The Gloriosa Trio had a wonderful time performing for GetClassical@ZincBar! We greatly appreciate Ilona Oltuski and her team’s hospitality, and more important, her vision for developing new audiences and unusual venues for classical music. It was our first time to play in a bar, but hopefully will not be our last-Brava, Ilona!

Matan Porat

Pianist, Composer

Ilona Oltuski is a great interviewer, very friendly and knowledgable and a keen supporter of many artists, young and established alike. Easy to talk to, Ilona makes sure the artist’s point is not lost and that the essence of music always comes across.

Lera Auerbach

Pianist, Composer, Painter, Sculptor, Poet

Ilona Oltuski provides a nurturing atmosphere for many musicians and music lovers in New York. Through the GetClassical blog, website and cultural initiatives she reaches a wide audience. She opened her home in Manhattan to Vadim Repin and me on short notice so that we could rehearse my 3rd violin concerto just before its premiere in Novosibirsk, Russia. Those rehearsals were critical to the success of the work and Ilona’s hospitality made all the difference that day.

Natalia Lavrona

Pianist, Co-founder of LP-Classics Recording Lable, Founder and Director of Music School of New York City

Ilona Oltuski, founder of the GetClassical blog and concert series, is one of the most passionate people I have the privilege of knowing. She is working tirelessly to bridge the gap between artists and audiences, by creating an engaging atmosphere in intimate, unexpected venues and bringing in talent worth recognizing. GetClassical hosts unique concerts that create a sense of community, where invigorated performers, be they world-renown musicians with colossal careers or a young musician still building his or her path, have an equal opportunity to share their art in a more relaxed setting with no divide and no barriers. The twenty-first century brings with it a lot of sensory experiences and social opportunities and we need pioneers, such as Ilona Oltuski and GetClassical to break the stigmas of the Classical Arts and create fresh and exciting events and content. These are concerts of today, but more importantly, the future.

Klara Min


I had a great time being interviewd by Ilona. Her questions were insightful as she is genuinely interested in artists’ true stories. All the best for GetClassical!

Sir Andras Schiff

Concert pianist and educator

It has been a pleasure to be interviewed by Ilona Oltuski in New York. She is well-informed, curious and intelligent. She cares deeply about the state of music in our society and also about the fate of young musicians.

Ittai Shapira

Composer, Voilinist, and Curator

Illona Oltuski was one of the first people to interview me in my dual role as violinist and composer. I was very impressed by her vast knowledge and interest in both traditional music and new, out of the box music. She provides a broad, yet unique platform as journalist and presenter for young, upcoming artists and established ones. Years of experience and a curious mind are reflected in her work.

Jennifer Choi


I loved performing on the Get Classical series! The evening that I played, the concert was at Gramercy Park Hotel’s classy and popular Rose Bar, which was the perfect salon-type of setting for the evening’s program. Several different artists performed in repertoire ranging from solo piano, solo violin, and chamber pieces spanning the centuries. The place was packed with music lovers and passersby’s alike, and each one seemed to be immersed by the senses of night. Ilona Oltuski has a keen vision of what it takes to bring classical music to today’s audience, while allowing her artists to flourish and express their authenticity.

Sandro Russo


I have appreciated on numerous occasions Ilona’s commitment to high standards in her recital presentations. Not only does she approach classical music with passion and enthusiasm, but also with a great deal of knowledge. Ilona’s presentations for GetClassical have both reevaluated the importance of making music in “salon-like” settings and given artists the possibility to offer individualitic and attrative programs to the audience.

Asi Mathatias


I am happy to join my friends and colleagues in this tribute to GetClassical. A tribute not only to a unique organization in New York’s music and cultural life, but whose nobility of purpose meant a great deal to all of us and will continue to remain so in the future.

Therese Milanovic

Pianist, Educator, Master Teacher at Golandsky Institute

Ilona lives, breathes and dreams music, and supports her artists with passion and generosity. She works with boundless energy in bringing classical music to new audiences, in particular the next generation of classical music lovers, by transplanting recitals into funky venues. Huge thanks to Ilona and Get Classical for a wonderful experience.

Galia Barkol

Actress, Director, Writer

Meeting with Ilona, I could instantly feel her genuine, immense passion for the arts and for increasing the exposure of artists and their work. I was struck by her deep understanding and sophisticated interpretation of things, and of how she skillfully translated a conversation to a beautiful, coherent and thoughtful review. I still enjoy visiting GetClassical and following the ever changing and consistently intriguing content if features, and look forward to what’s next!

Bob Durso

Pianist, Educator, Co-founder The Golandsky Institute

I consider the work that Ilona Oltuski is doing at GetClassical to be some of the most inspiring to date. She is making it possible for artists and audiences to experience each other in the most remarkable way. The future of classical music is a brighter place with people like Ilona leading the way.

Josu De Solaun


It was lots of fun to participate in Ilona Oltuski’s dynamic initiative of creating new stages and spaces for classical music, in an effort to both re-vitalize and continue its diverse and powerful traditions. I felt both the intimacy of a close audience coupled with a refreshing laid-backness to the atmosphere that allowed for unusually interesting moments of music-making. I encourage all to attend and witness something different and energetic in the New York classical music scene.

Karine Poghosyan


One of the most meaningful and inspiring experiences I have ever had as a pianist was the “Artist and Music” concert/Exhibition at the Louis Meisel Gallery in SoHo, in February of 2015, where I collaborated with my father, the artist Razmik Pogosyan. As my father had his first solo opening in New York, I played a program inspired by his amazing artwork! This unique one-of-a-kind event would not have been possible, had it not been for the deep insight and creative vision of Ilona Oltuski, and the great organization she heads-“Great Classical”

Julian Schwarz


GetClassical promotes the exposure of today’s most passionate and engaging artists in intimate, relaxed settings. Performers and pieces are afforded background and context through the sharp writing of Ilona Oltuski, and personal remarks from the stage contribute to the warm atmosphere. Having given a concert for GetClassical, I can see clearly the forshadowing of a salon renaissance.

Hilan Warshaw

Producer, Director

What Ilona Oltuski has achieved with her remarkable series is to return to the roots of solo and chamber music -presenting it in a social format that feels as intimate and communicative as the works themselves. Even before the exquisite performances begin, the senses are warmed by food, drink, an enchanting setting, and enthusiastic people in dialogue with the music, the musicians, and each other. It was a great pleasure for me to capture one of GetClassical’s events for a short film, and I look forward to attending many more.

Alex Moutouzkine


Ilona Oltuski – Brilliant mind, powerful imagination, and magnetic charisma. She transforms the vibe of classical music scenery and presents artists from within, as an insightful writer and a creative impresario. Bravo and live on GetClassical!

Matt Herskowitz

Classical and Jazz Pianist, Composer and Arranger

GetClassical is going where many other classical presenters fear to tread; presenting classical music in different styles and forms. I had a great experience performing for GetClassical at the hip venue Zinc Bar, where I performed my jazz arrangements of pieces by Bach, Chopin and Schumann, as well as my own original compositions, at an intimate, relaxed venue with a great post-modern ambiance. I’m looking forward to performing there again soon with my jazz trio!

Jerome Rose

Pianist, Educator, Founding Director

Ilona Oltuski – and her platform GetClassical – is a very serious presenter/writer of Classical Music and a wonderful connoisseur of the piano. Everything she touches creates a better world in which the “Art of Music” can flourish.

Jerome Barry


I am extremely grateful to GetClassical and Ilona Oltuski for her dedication to the Arts and to the many artists she has featured. In this way, she has made quality and professionalism an important factor in elevating the taste and education of so many people. This devotion strengthens the arts and artists, giving opportunities to many fine performers to gain the experience and recognition so necessary for their careers. She provides an outstanding service, which I deeply respect and admire. May she continue her important work many years to come.

Sean Hickey

Composer, Senior Vice-President, NAXOS OF AMERICA, INC.

We at Naxos speak regularly about creating a greater culture for classical music. In so many ways, Ilona Oltuski embodies that goal. From her founding of Get Classical, dedicated to discovering and promoting valid artists at important career stages, to her popular concert series and regular presence at notable concerts, she is what the art form both creates and desires: a voice that engages the community. While more concert presenters and media outlets have turned away, she is able to help ensure that the genre, and the wildly expressive piano, always has a place.

Roman Rabinovich


GetClassical has a special atmosphere of intimacy, freshness and spontaneity.

Michael Brown


Ilona Oltuski is a wonderful writer, generous, knowledgeable, and with an unending thirst for great music. She organizes unforgettable evenings where first-rate artists perform in intimate and personal settings.

Sergey Gordeev

NYC-based TV journalist, jazz pianist

In this age of omnipresent technology that provides so many ways for us to get connected, ironically, we feel more disconnected than ever. And so it is vitally important that we have something like GetClassical, which allows us to re-connect to each other through music-in real space, real time. All of Ilona’s projects-GetClassical salons, performaces, and artist interviews- keep the power of the arts alive and remind us of our humanity.

Edna Golandsky

Pianist, Educator, Founding director

Ilona Oltuski’s passionate efforts to support exceptional young artists and bring them to the attention of the public by presenting them in intimate venues have been admirable. She is a rare individual who makes things happen no matter what obstacles are in the way, through her writings and concert presentations and we are fortunate to have her.

Elisha Abas

With friendship and support Pianist

With GetClassical, music journalist Ilona Oltuski has created a rare niche to connect musicians and audiences in a unique and very personal way. By way of her unique New York concert series, as well as her intuitive writing, she really “gets” an artist, and I enjoyed my collaborations in Getclassical@Rosebar a short while back, it was really special.

Michael Brofman

Pianist, Concert Producer

Ilona is an incisive writer on classical music and a musical entrepreneur for the modern age

Jeffrey Biegel

Pianists, Educator, Composer, Arranger, Producer

Ilona is one of the most dedicated and interesting journalists I have encountered in my career. Her love of the piano and knowledge of the repertoire is on a superlative level. It is always a tremendous pleasure to be interviewed by Ilona and meet her at many musical occasions!

Lucille Chung and Alessio Bax


Among the best writers and interviewers proudly stands Ilona Oltuski and her GetClassical blog. She quickly gets to the point of an interview with her musical background and inquisitive mind. At the same time she offers a special and unique angle to any article she writes. Being interviewed by her is always a comfortable and inspiring process.

Jed Distler

Composer/Pianist/Gramophone Contributor/WWFM radio host

The inclusive and generous spirit distinguishing Ilona Otulski’s enterprising and energetic organization GetClassical reveals itself on the wide variety of established and emerging artists featured in intimate and inviting concert presentations, as well as the extensive and insightful journalistic profiles and interviews.

Evgeny Kissin


Every luck and success to Ilona Oltuski in her noble endeavors, wishes Evgeny Kissin.

Adrienne Haan

Chanteuse International

Having worked as an artist for GetClassical, I can only state that my experience has been second to none. Ilona Oltuski is very dedicated, always striving to feature new interesting and diverse artists and feature them with personal sensitivity and an utmost reliable professionalism.

Ilona Oltuski is also an investigative writer, who captures the essence of the musicians she writes about in a nutshell, bringing out what’s most captivating about the artist’s individuality. A musician at heart herself, Ilona Oltuski “gets” the artists she is presenting, making the collaboration a most enjoyable and fruitful one.

Alexander Fiterstein

Clarinetist, Educator

What Ilona does with GetClassical is truly wonderful: Insightful interviews that give the artist’s perspective, as well as building a vibrant classical music community through the many inspiring performances she presents.

Edna Landau

Writer, Consulting Educator, Artist Management

Ilona Oltuski has devoted herself tirelessly to broadening the audience for classical music by presenting exciting concerts in intimate, innovative New York venues. Her GetClassical series has featured established sought-after artists as well as emerging new talents. A prolific writer, she has spotlighted both prominent artists as well as anticipated stars of tomorrow in interesting interviews on her blog.
llona’s impeccable taste, comprehensive knowledge of music and strong contacts within the industry, has ensured success in her many endeavors. She has made an important contribution to the New York music scene and we all owe her a lot of gratitude.

Vicky Chow

Bang on a Can All-Stars, New Music Detroit, Grand Band

Ilona Oltuski is an important supporter, writer, and lover of music making by many of today’s great artists. Her love, curiosity and passion for music, in her writing and artist salons, create a community where everyone can gain better understanding and appreciation for this art form. Thank you for all of your dedication towards live music and living musicians!

Vassily Primakov

Classcal Pianist, Producer and Co-president of LP Classics Inc.

My experience with GetClassical is one of the best in my professional concert life. It gave me amazing and rare opportunities to perform in the most unique venues that allow listeners to be closer to music making, closer to the artists and experience music on a whole different level – intimate and profound.
Ilona is doing something very special – she creates not only the concerts and events, she created the atmosphere, mood, and different listening experience. And let’s not forget that she is an amazing writer – her interviews and articles always go deep into the artist’s life, always personal and always sincere. Those qualities are rare and should be cherished. The classical music world has a new superhero, and her name is Ilona Oltuski.