David Fyodorovich Oistrakh was a Soviet classical violinist, violist and conductor. Oistrakh collaborated with major orchestras and musicians from many parts of the world and was the dedicatee of numerous violin works. He is considered one of the preeminent violinists of the 20th century. During World War II, he was active in the Soviet Union, premiering new concerti by Nikolai Miaskovsky and Aram Khachaturian. In 1949 he gave his first concert in the West – in Helsinki. In 1951 he appeared at the "Maggio Musicale" Festival in Florence, in 1952 he was in East Germany for the Beethoven celebrations, then in France and Britain, and eventually, in 1955, he was allowed to tour the United States.