News and Views

The Bernstein Benchmark

The centenary of Leonard Bernstein’s birth has special resonance for the IPO. August 25, 2018 marks the centennial of the birth of Leonard Bernstein. Though his arrival to Ukrainian-Jewish immigrants in Lawrence, Massachusetts was quiet and unassuming, his departure 72 years later, as one of the century’s most recognizable and revered men, had impact around the globe. Bernstein left behind a body of work, circle of admirers and variety of energized institutions, notably the New York Philharmonic, where he was…[Read More]

An August Return to China

Zubin Mehta leads the IPO to Nanjing and Harbin for five concerts. In the first weeks of August, months before its much-anticipated fall tour to the United States, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra is making an historic return to China for concerts in Nanjing, Jiangsu’s provincial capital, on August 5, 6 and 7 and Harbin, the largest city in Heilongjiang province, on August 10 and 12. This will be the full orchestra’s eighth trip to China, but its first during the…[Read More]

A Golden State of Gratitude

Los Angeles and San Francisco prepare benefit galas befitting the occasion.   Part 2 – The West Coast The middle leg of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2017 Fall Tour runs up and down the length of California with three concerts in three cities over three days. Of those three cities – Los Angeles, San Francisco and Santa Barbara – the first two will be the site of benefit galas that share two important goals: celebrating Maestro Zubin Mehta‘s extraordinary leadership…[Read More]

Shows of affection

  The five Fall Benefit Galas honoring Zubin Mehta will be shows in themselves. PART 1 – The Eastern Region This fall, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra‘s tour will provide seven cities with a major musical event and, in five of them – New York, Toronto, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Miami – one of the most significant social events of any year. For months, titans of philanthropy have cleared their calendars for the days surrounding the IPO’s appearance in their city…[Read More]

Young Patrons Circle: Refreshing support

Think classical music is lost on the next generation? Think again. The Young Patrons Circle, which the AFIPO is launching on both coasts this year, is attracting professionals from age 21 to 40 who want to support the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra while deepening their understanding of classical music and connecting with like-minded professionals, artists and entrepreneurs across the country. “Since our L.A. launch earlier this year we’ve had tremendous interest and our membership is growing quickly,” said West Coast Director…[Read More]

The right place

A little fate-tempting and a lot of talent brought Linor Katz to the IPO Several times during her 30 years, cellist Linor Katz has stood at a crossroads. A few years ago it was the intersection of Israel and the United States. In 2012, after spending the previous five years earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music performance at Boston’s New England Conservatory of Music, the homeland was plucking hard at her heartstrings. She and her older sister Moran…[Read More]

A Historic Project

Dedication and detective work are getting an organized, digitized IPO Archives online Avivit Hochstadter picked up another unmarked photo from among the countless boxes and cabinets that long served as the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s Archives. Once again the IPO Archives Manager’s monumental digitization project had ground to a halt. She showed the image to Archives Researcher Gabriel Volé, an orchestra bassist from 1967 to 2013 who, in addition to occasionally filling in on stage, helps Hochstadter two days a week.…[Read More]

Goodwill ambassador

Violinist Sharon Cohen represents the IPO and Israel at Alan Gilbert’s Farewell ‘Concert for Unity’ at Lincoln Center, June 8-10 A United Nations of music is coming together within blocks of United Nations Plaza. Individual members of 17 orchestras in 15 countries are joining with the New York Philharmonic for “The Concert for Unity,” June 7-10. Among them, 34-year-old violinist Sharon Cohen will represent both the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and the State of Israel. They will perform Mahler’s Symphony No.…[Read More]

A Learning Experience

IPO holds its First International Music Education Conference, May 14-17 With a focus on “Music Education in the Community: Traditions, Challenges and Innovations,” the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra will host its first International Education Conference May 14-17. Speakers and attendees representing orchestras and academia from as far as Seoul and Seattle will converge on Tel Aviv’s Bronfman Auditorium for four days of presentations and workshops led by leading educators, scholars and musicologists from 17 countries. The conference will also allow the…[Read More]

Mutual Benefit

The IPO and the Verbier Festival join fundraising forces on June 4 Beyond its art, one thing that sets an arts organization apart is an ability to turn annual fundraising into an international sensation. The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra Foundation accomplished it three years ago when it first teamed with Switzerland’s Verbier Festival to create a one-of-a-kind joint benefit event including an intimate recital by a world renowned soloist, an auction with live online and call-in bidding, and a lavish dinner.…[Read More]

Cultural Exchange

Toronto and Tel Aviv Host Each Other’s Orchestra in 2017 On October 28, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra will perform at Toronto’s Roy Thomson Hall, ending a 25-year absence from Canada’s largest city and completing an intercontinental cultural exchange that begins this weekend. On May 7, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra heads to Israel for two concerts and a week of touring historic Israeli sites. It’s a dateline-hopping reunion of sorts, between two orchestras that in 1989 appeared side by side in…[Read More]

Symphonic Sampling

Symphonic Sampling Primephonic USA offers AFIPO’s newsletter subscribers free downloads from the IPO Discography   Generally when 80-year-olds want to talk about their discs, you’re going to get an earful on back pain. Not so with the 80-year-old Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. With, according to discogs[1], a healthy back catalog of 169 recordings, the IPO discography provides listening pleasure to millions around the world as well as a look back into the orchestra’s historical record. The IPO discography goes back to…[Read More]

Countdown to pension; a two-and-a-half year blog

by Peter Marck

March 2019 will mark a huge change in the life of Peter Marck. Join us on an intimate and personal quest through the tides with a passionate musician and IPO icon, and a dear friend. For the first time and exclusively to IPO colleagues and followers, a musician of our Orchestra will share insights into the challenging but also liberating process he goes through – towards his final performance with the IPO.   PART ONE My father was a doctor…[Read More]

L.A. Family Music Day

Musical Family Engagement AFIPO’s Family Music Day returns to L.A. May 21 with Orli Shahom and Windsync On May 21, the American Friends of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s annual Family Music Day returns to Los Angeles with a morning of musical engagement for children and their families. The event, which benefits IPO’s KeyNote program, will feature internationally renowned concert pianist Orli Shaham and the Windsync wind quintet. All six musicians will join the children in an instrument “petting zoo” before…[Read More]

The IPO 2017 North American Tour

The IPO in America The orchestra announces the itinerary and programming for its fall trip to the U.S. and Canada The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s international tours are highly acclaimed and eagerly awaited cultural events around the globe. Recently the IPO announced its Fall 2017 concert dates and programming for a six-city North American tour from October 25 through November 9. Led by Maestro Zubin Mehta, the orchestra’s Music Director for Life, the orchestra will visit New York City, Toronto, Los Angeles,…[Read More]

Huberman in Hardcover

Josh Aronson puts his IPO documentary ‘Orchestra of Exiles’ into print   Some years ago, Dorit Straus had an epiphany. The Israeli-born amateur pianist, then living in New York City, shared it with another of her piano teacher’s students. “She told me that she had suddenly realized that her entire family was alive because of the actions of one man in 1936,” recalled documentary filmmaker Josh Aronson. That man was Bronislaw Huberman, and because, like many Americans, Aronson had not…[Read More]

The Maestro’s Sesquicentennial

A new Toscanini biography recounts his role in the birth of the IPO March 25 marks the 150th Anniversary of the birth of conductor Arturo Toscanini. His pre-eminence was such that for more than half a century before his death at 89 in 1957, the world knew him simply as ‘The Maestro.’ He lent that international stature to the 1936 launch of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, then called the Palestine Orchestra, by conducting a program that, to mark IPO’s 80th…[Read More]

A Concerted Effort

IPO’s Sulamot Program for Social Change   With its philosophy of “Music for Social Change,” Sulamot is having a positive impact across Israel. Created in 2010 by the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in association with Tel Aviv University, the program annually gives thousands of at-risk children a musical route to become happier, healthier adults. Taking its name from the Hebrew word for both a musical scale and a ladder, Sulamot currently provides more than 2,000 children with musical instruments and training.…[Read More]

A Message from our CEO, Naomi Grabel

Friends,   I am just back from a week in Israel visiting with our orchestra, and I have to tell you how exciting it was. The concerts I heard, featuring music by Stravinsky, Mendelssohn, Prokofiev and Tchaikovsky, with soloist Julian Rachlin and Conductor Gianandrea Noseda, were nothing short of superb. Audiences loved every minute, and not a seat was unfilled. I hope you watched the Live Stream on February 18th along with thousands of people from around the globe. We…[Read More]

2017 U.S. Tour to begin and end in New York City

October 25, November 7-9 at Carnegie Hall

Carnegie Hall will once again kick off the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s U.S. tour commencing October 25, 2017 with Music Director Zubin Mehta. Following their national voyage, the Israel Philharmonic returns to the world-class venue in New York City for three performances beginning November 7th, concluding their U.S. tour on November 9th. It was recently announced that Maestro Zubin Mehta, who has been with the Israel Philharmonic for nearly 50 awe-inspiring years, is retiring from his legendary role as music director…[Read More]

Maestro Zubin Mehta To Retire October 2019

Legendary conductor of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Maestro Zubin Mehta, emotionally announced that he will retire as musical director of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in October 2019. At his retirement, Mehta will have served as the musical director of the Israel Philharmonic for 50 years. He first came to the Israel Philharmonic in 1961, as a replacement for legendary conductor Eugene Ormandy. The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra appointed Mehta as musical advisor in 1969 and as musical conductor in 1977. In…[Read More]

AFIPO Names First CEO

November 21, 2016 David Hirsch, President of the Board of the American Friends of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (AFIPO), announced today that the Board, following a unanimous recommendation of a search committee, has appointed Naomi Grabel as the AFIPO’s first Chief Executive Officer effective December 12, 2016. Mr. Hirsch states: “Ms. Grabel’s extensive background made her a great candidate, but it was her vision that ultimately led to her selection as our very first CEO. The board of the AFIPO has…[Read More]

AFIPO Earns Fourth Coveted 4-Star Rating!

American Friends of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (AFIPO) is proud to be recognized as a 4-star charity by Charity Navigator, America’s premier independent charity evaluator. Charity Navigator works to advance a more efficient and responsive philanthropic marketplace by evaluating the financial health of America’s largest charities.   AFIPO earned its fourth coveted 4-star rating for demonstrating strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency. Receiving four out of a possible four stars is the highest possible rating and indicates…[Read More]

Music Festival to Celebrate IPO’s 80th Anniversary

December 26, 2016 will mark 80 years since Maestro Arturo Toscanini conducted the inaugural concert of the (later named) Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. This historic moment represented not only the culmination of Bronislaw Huberman’s courageous efforts to save hundreds of lives by establishing an “orchestra of the Jewish people,” but also the creation of a first-class musical institution. Ever since the modern founding of the State of Israel, the IPO has received international recognition, unlike any other Israeli cultural institution. The…[Read More]

IPO to Stream Live Concerts to Celebrate Mehta’s 80th Birthday

This week the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra kicks off a stellar series of concerts in Israel to celebrate Zubin Mehta’s 80th Birthday. These concerts, conducted by Maestro Mehta, will feature soloists Denis Matsuev, Khatia Buniatishvili, Pinchas Zukerman and Amanda Forsyth. Each concert will be streamed live online. Here are the program details for each concert: MONDAY, APRIL 11, 2016 – 8:00pm in Israel time Zubin Mehta, conductor Denis Matsuev, piano Khatia Buniatishvili, piano Dvorak: Carnival Overture Prokofiev: Piano Concerto no. 2…[Read More]

Interview with Yuja Wang

Watch an interview with Yuja Wang conducted by IPO Principal Bass Peter Marck

Happy New Year!

Thank You For Making 2015 A Success!       Your generous support enabled the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra to bring music and the spirit of Israel to dozens of cities across Europe and the United States.             The educational programs of the orchestra are thriving. Sulamot now has 18 ensembles and KeyNote reached 29,000 children, students and adults throughout Israel.                 The IPO continues to attract top international talent.…[Read More]

Major Gift Announcement

Helgard Field

Helgard Field has been an AFIPO board member and dedicated supporter of the Israel Philharmonic for eight years. On November 10, 2015  she announced to the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra a $3 million donation that will support  guest conductors in Israel. Mrs. Field recently spoke with us about this generous donation and reflected on the orchestra’s recent visit to Los Angeles.   What were your impressions of the Los Angeles concert and gala? Every gala is something fabulous and different. But…[Read More]

Grains of Sand in NYC

By Sivan Maayani

Is there a city that means so much for so many people as the city of New York? It is a vibrant metropolis, sizzling with life, where there are at least fifty different places you can visit in a given time, each just as fascinating as the next. It is a place to both lose and find yourself, where you feel like a minute grain of sand in an infinite crowd; but every topic of your most personal interests can…[Read More]

Board Member Spotlight

Lauren Veronis

Lauren Veronis joined the Board of Directors of American Friends of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in 2000 and currently serves as Chairman of the Executive Committee and Vice President. A dedicated supporter of the IPO, she has been involved in many events and is a co-chair of the November 5th New York Gala. Mrs. Veronis recently shared her thoughts on what the orchestra means to her, why the upcoming United States tour is so exciting and more.   You’ve been…[Read More]

Milan

BY PETER MARCK

The IPO played its last Mahler Wednesday night at Teatro alla Scala in Milan. At the rehearsal, we said thanks to Yakov and Amit the stage managers, Yuval the librarian, Drorr the doctor, Ofer the travel manager, Alexandra, Georgi and Tanya our last minute substitutes, Michael, Enrique and Omri who took care of suitcases, Michal the personnel manager, and Avi who planned the tour.  After a brief stop in Tel Aviv, the tour will continue with concerts in Athens, and…[Read More]

Wroclaw, Poland

BY PETER MARCK

After a quick lunch of pierogi in the old city of Wroclaw, Breslau, Poland, we performed at the brand new concert hall, the National Forum of Music. The Philharmonic and Zubin Mehta were the first foreign orchestra to perform in the hall which opened only two weeks ago!  It is a fantastic facility: beautiful dressing rooms, plenty of room backstage and incredible acoustics.  We played the best Mahler of the tour! Wroclaw, which was called Breslau when it was part…[Read More]

Bonn, BeethovenFest and Berlin

BY PETER MARCK

The tour “heats-up” beginning in Bonn; everyday a concert in a new city: Bonn, Berlin, Wroclaw, Milano and Rimini. In Bonn, where Beethoven was born, we were guests at the BeethovenFest where the orchestra performed Mahler’s Ninth Symphony.    From Bonn we flew to Berlin.  Backstage at the Philharmonie there was no lack of conductors: Kurt Masur, Daniel Barenboim and Omer Meir Welber came to visit Zubin and orchestra members. There were also musicians who teach and perform in Berlin.…[Read More]

A First Visit to Armenia

BY PETER MARCK

The Israel Philharmonic made its first visit to the Armenian Capital of Yerevan.  The city, dominated by Mount Ararat, a snow capped peak rising to 5500 meters, is an interesting mix of Oriental design and Soviet city planning. The Opera house and Republic Square, connected by a modern walking street, are surrounded by wide avenues and monumental buildings. In Republic Square, the fountains are illuminated and classical music plays while crowds cool off with ice cream cones. Behind the Opera…[Read More]

Enescu Music Festival Bucharest

BY PETER MARCK

Can you imagine Beethoven on the Euro coin, Michael Jackson on the one dollar bill or the Beatles on the Pound Sterling? In Romania, George Enescu, the national composer, is on the 5 Lei bill, and the Israel Philharmonic was once again at the Enescu Festival for 2 concerts.  On Tuesday night we performed Schoenberg and Bruckner and on Wednesday night Enescu’s “Symphonic Poem Vox Maris” (Song of the Sea) and Mahler’s Ninth Symphony.  The Sala Palatului was packed both…[Read More]

Lost in Transit: Bucharest

BY PETER MARCK

What makes a great tour concert?  A well rested, calm, well fed, comfortable orchestra? Absolutely! But sometimes things don’t work out.  Last Monday, the orchestra and Maestro Mehta flew from Zurich to Bucharest for their first appearance at the Enescu Festival. A well timed day: land at 3:30, one hour rehearsal at 7:00 of Schoenberg and Bruckner, sandwiches, then concert at 8:30.The boarding and flight came off like clockwork and we landed on time. We watched as the carousel delivered the…[Read More]

Lucerne and Gstaad

BY PETER MARCK

Just as prestigious as the Salzburg Festival, the Lucerne Festival hosts a long list of world class orchestras and conductors. The IPO arrived on a warm Friday afternoon in the middle of SommerFest, an alternative festival of street bands and musicians. The city’s squares were alive with an incredible mix of ensembles – Balkan Brass Bands, Classic-Cool Strings, and Country-Jazz to name just a few. It was a chance to stretch out on the lawn in the parks or have…[Read More]

Salzburg

BY PETER MARCK

The moment of truth has arrived: the Salzburg Festival – the Olympics of music, where the greatest orchestras, soloists and conductors come together. It all takes place in the city where Mozart himself used to run around, Salzburg. Even Zubin is nervous and that means more rehearsals; 3 hours the evening we arrive, 2 hours the next morning, then an acoustic rehearsal an hour before the concert. Maestro Mehta brought one of the most difficult programs to the festival, Schoenberg’s…[Read More]

Ljubljana

By Peter Marck

The orchestra finally performed indoors in an actual concert hall! Although Ljubljana’s “Cankarjev Dom” is not the hall where Gustav Mahler was music director, it is a wonderful modern hall and we had a great concert. The standing ovation, not to be taken for granted in Ljubljana, was very rewarding for both the orchestra and Zubin. Tuesday was the first free day of the tour; an opportunity to re-charge our batteries before important concerts at Salzburg and Lucerne. The orchestra…[Read More]

Grafenegg Festival

By Peter Marck

A working weekend in the village!  The orchestra spent its first weekend on tour in the Austrian village of St. Polten, 30 minutes away from the Grafenegg Castle, Vienna’s favorite summer music festival.  The village consists of the Dom and Rathaus squares, the farmers’ market, and a 19th century synagogue. It is one of the quietest places one can imagine a tour weekend.  It will get a bit more exciting in a week when the regional wine and food festival…[Read More]

First Stop: Riga

By Peter Marck

The Israel Philharmonic set off on the 2015 European Festival Tour, leaving Tel Aviv’s 90 degree heat and landing in Riga, Latvia to 55 degrees of Baltic chill. Surrounded by a pine forest in Riga’s resort village of Jurmala, the orchestra rehearsed and performed at the Dzintari Concert venue; an outdoor stage with excellent acoustics…and plenty of fresh air! Maestro Mehta conducted Richard Strauss’ “Til Eulenspiegel,” Arnold Schoenberg’s “Verklarte Nacht” as well as Peter Tchaikovsky’s Sixth Symphony, “Pathetique.”  After the…[Read More]

Asaf Maoz

IPO Violinist

Born in Israel in 1979, Asaf Maoz is a graduate of the Talma Yellin School of the Arts, the Rubin Academy of Music in Tel-Aviv, and the Rostock Hochschule für Musik, Germany. He served in the IDF as a distinguished musician and has won several competitions and scholarships from the America-Israel Foundation, Yehudi Menuhin’s “Live Music Now” and the Fundación Barenboim-Said. In 2013 he joined the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra as a second violin. This November he will perform as a soloist…[Read More]

European Festivals

Summer 2015

3 weeks, 8 countries, 12 festivals, 14 concerts, 120 musicians and staff – while most of us spend the last few weeks of August trying to fit in a few final trips to the beach, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra will be on an extensive tour of Europe’s most prestigious music festivals. The orchestra begins on August 20th in Riga, Latvia and winds its way throughout the continent until September 9th with a final performance in the Italian coastal city of…[Read More]

Saimir Pirgu

IPO Guest Artist

Acclaimed by audiences and critics around the world, Saimir Pirgu has risen rapidly on both the opera and concert stages.  Born in 1981, in Elbasan, Albania, he began studying music at a very young age. The recipient of several honors and awards, he has performed around the globe, becoming one of the best-known singers in the international lyric world. This July he debuted the role of Riccardo in Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. Learn more about his career,…[Read More]

Sulamot Celebrates

Five Years

Our special program SULAMOT – Music for Social Change, completed its fifth year of activity, celebrating with a series of community concerts countrywide. Sulamot is an innovative and inspirational music education program for at-risk children. It focuses primarily on children with the least resources and greatest needs in peripheral areas and underprivileged communities. The program reaches children from many different backgrounds including immigrants from numerous countries, reflecting the diversity found in Israel. When Sulamot enters a school everyone participates –…[Read More]

Thomas Hampson

IPO Guest Artist

Thomas Hampson enjoys a singular international career as an opera singer, recording artist, and “ambassador of song,” maintaining an active interest in research, education, musical outreach, and technology. The American baritone has performed in the world’s most important concert halls and opera houses with many renowned singers, pianists, conductors, and orchestras. This month he will again join the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, which he likens to being with “family.”    How did your singing career begin and what drew you to opera?…[Read More]

Music for Children and Children in Music

On June 1st 2,500 children and their parents gathered for a special “IPO for Kids” performance in the Bronfman Auditorium. The theme, “Music for Children and Children in Music” brought smiles to the faces of not only the audience but also the musicians who shared the stage with two bright young stars.   The evening featured debuts by child prodigy Alma Deutscher and up-and-coming soloist Danielle Akta. At ten-years-old Alma is a composer, pianist and violinist. The orchestra performed her…[Read More]

Rachel Kam

Violist

Rachel Kam has been a member of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra for over three decades. In the interview below she shares stories of performing with artists from Leonard Bernstein to her own extremely talented children and gives advice to the next generation of musicians joining this revered orchestra.   What made you want to become a classical musician? I never actually decided to become a musician. I don’t come from a musical family and I didn’t hear any classical music at home.…[Read More]

Jonathan Hadas

Bass Clarinetist

Jonathan Hadas is part of the “next generation” of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. At only 29 years-old he has been a bass clarinetist with the orchestra for four years. He recently spoke to us about how nerve wracking his audition was, his views on the future of classical music, a love of Stravinsky and much more.   What made you want to become a classical musician? I can’t say that at age three I knew I wanted to be a…[Read More]

The IPO for Kids

Harps in Harmony

On April 27, a special concert of “The IPO for Kids” series took place featuring the harp or, to be more precise, 53 harps – filling the stage to the brim! The performance was presided over by Israeli personality Tal Mosari and showcased the beautiful instrument in all its glory. The event featured the world premiere performance of Tali Gelzer’s work Water in which two soloists, Tali Gelzer and Marina Geneshin, displayed the ability of the harp to imitate the…[Read More]

March Music and Masquerades

  One of the IPO’s first concerts of the family series this season was a festive performance on Purim. Attendees and several orchestra members donned costumes and paraded in the lobby. Following that was a concert of lively pieces from musicals and movies. It was a wonderful day of tradition, music and fun.   Last week 15 orchestra members participated in a special production of Prokefiev’s whimsical Peter and the Wolf at the Ganei Tikva cultural center. Several musicians performed…[Read More]

AFIPO Events

2015 is off to a busy start! This quarter we have held diverse events across the country from New York to Los Angeles to Palm Beach.   Chamber Music Recital Our annual Palm Beach event was held on March 12 in a beautiful private home. The evening featured a gourmet dinner followed by a performance by the innovative Shuffle Concert. Guests were given a numbered menu filled with masterpieces in every possible musical style; if their number was selected, they…[Read More]

Itamar Zorman

IPO Guest Artist

Performing again with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra later this month will be Itamar Zorman. In addition to working with the IPO, Zorman has performed as a soloist with numerous orchestras throughout the world – the American Symphony Orchestra in Carnegie Hall, Het Gelders Orkest in Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Tokyo Symphony in Suntory Hall, and Polish Radio Chamber Orchestra, amongst others. This talented musician recently took the time to discuss his upcoming engagement with the IPO, the release of his debut album,…[Read More]

Coexistence Through Music

Each year the KeyNote program reaches over 29,000 Israeli children and 2017 is off to a phenomenal start with events targeting diverse groups.   In 2014, 1500 students from across Israel were treated to a special concert entitled “When East and West Meet.” Pieces by Mozart, Rimsky-Korsakov, Saint-Saens and Vilensky were performed by members of the IPO alongside the Young Philharmonic Orchestra (ages 15-18.) Additionally, 60 children from El Wasphia school in Nazareth played Darbukas (drums) and Shesh-Besh, (the Arab Jewish…[Read More]

our new concertmaster

Exclusive Interview

It feels like a family over there and I’m very much looking forward to joining that family. – David Radzynski   On December 19, 2014, the day that would have been IPO founder Bronislaw Huberman’s 132nd birthday, the Orchestra named 28-year-old David Radzynski as its new concertmaster, joining current concertmasters Yigal Tuneh and Ilya Konovalov in the position. The young violinist hails from Ohio and grew up among a musical family. His father, Jan Radzynski, is a composer as well…[Read More]

A Personal Note

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

Whenever I finish a tour blog I realize that there is no way to convey the hardships, small and large, that we share: the separation from family, friends, hobbies, familiar surroundings, the endless hours spent in lines at hotels and airports, the loneliness of hotel rooms, the frustration of not being able to read a menu or order a meal in a foreign language…it certainly looks exciting to travel the world, playing concerts in great concert halls with Zubin, but…[Read More]

Finishing the Tour

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

The IPO completed its tour of the Far East with visits to Xiamen and Zhuhai in the south of China. Zhuhai sits between Macau and Hong Kong. A bridge will soon connect the three cities making Zhuhai the center of this financial/vacation/gambling powerhouse. It is also a lovely area with long beaches and a promenade along the sea that stretches forever; it’s a bit like Florida. From the concert hall we could see Macau across the river. After the last…[Read More]

Blue Skies in Bejing

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

The IPO landed in Beijing at midnight and arrived at the hotel at 1:30, but we awoke to beautiful clear blue skies. We left Singapore in 30C heat and arrived in 3 C. cold! The air was unusually clean thanks to Beijing’s factories being closed during the 3 day APEC conference. Instead of performing at The Great Hall of the People, we performed at a real concert hall, the National Center for the Performing Arts. In addition to the concert…[Read More]

The IPO in Singapore

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

The Israel Philharmonic arrived in Singapore to perform for the first time. In 1978, Singapore was just a stop-over on the way to Australia for the IPO, today it is an essential concert venue celebrating “Asian Tiger’s” thirst for culture and admiration for Zubin Mehta. The visit was under the patronage of the Sassoon Family – Victor and Michelle, in conjunction with the Israeli Embassy. Orchestra members were treated to a reception at the Sassoon home. The morning of the…[Read More]

IPO, Maurice Bejart, and the Tokyo Ballet

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

The IPO and Zubin Mehta joined up with Maurice Bejart and the Tokyo Ballet for 3 performances of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony at the NHK auditorium. There was some initial confusion on stage, but soon everyone got down to work rehearsing the music and choreography.

Family Touring

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

The Israel Philharmonic tours more than any other major orchestra. We maintain an international reputation, we serve the diplomatic interests of Israel, and our Music Director, Zubin Mehta, has fans around the world. But how does it affect family life? When you join the IPO, you know it’s going to be tough on children and spouses; especially for couples in the orchestra. There have been “legendary” couples: Teddy and Talia; Toli and Liza, Shelly and Micha, Saida and Adi, who…[Read More]

Shabbat in Osaka

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

Shabbat evening in Osaka was marked with Kiddush while listening to the IPO concert of Schubert and Mahler recorded on Wednesday and broadcast by the NHK (Japan’s national public broadcasting organization). Afterwards we went for neighborhood sushi. We stayed at a particularly good hotel, rated number 1 in Osaka by Trip Advisor. The conversation at breakfast involved the amenities and gadgets in the room: Italian coffee maker and Japanese tea service, a bathtub with television and water-proof remote, a shower…[Read More]

Rehearsal Canceled

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

On Thursday, the IPO flew from Tokyo to the southern city of Fukuoka; a one hour 40 minute flight. A rehearsal of Tchaikovsky, Mozart and Vivaldi was planned for 5:00pm before the 7:00pm concert. We arrived at 2:00pm to hear the good news that the rehearsal was canceled! Still there was barely enough time to nap before the concert…however, the concert was a great success! The audience wouldn’t let Maestro Mehta leave the stage and we played two encores; the…[Read More]

IPO Concerts in Tokyo

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

The Israel Philharmonic finished a week of concerts in Tokyo with programs at Suntory Hall, Ikebukuru and the NHK Concert Hall.  Between rehearsals and concerts, players toured Nikko, the ancient capitol of Japan, Kamakura with the largest Buddha in the world, repaired instruments with local craftsmen, practiced in the hotel rooms, or rested for the rougher part of the Japan tour: Fukuoka, Osaka, Nagoya, Mie, and back to Tokyo. At the NHK concert, Zubin Mehta signed the first page of…[Read More]

Israel Philharmonic Participates In Tsunami Violin Project

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

Musicians of the IPO joined in the Tsunami Violin Project, performing on a unique quartet of string instruments in Suntory Hall, Tokyo.  The Tsunami Violin Project was born in the aftermath of the tsunami which left behind vast destruction in March 2011, only months after the orchestra’s last tour to Japan.  In addition to the devastation, 10,000 children were left homeless and 2,000 orphaned.  Violin maker Muneyuki Nakazawa built the quartet from wood torn from homes in the Tohoku region…[Read More]

Suntory Hall Tokyo

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

“The Israel Philharmonic with its music director Zubin Mehta is Israel’s greatest cultural asset!” a wonderful compliment from the Israeli Ambassador to Japan, Ruth Kahanoff, who attended the IPO concert in Suntory Hall. Sunday afternoon’s concert of Vivaldi, Mozart and Tchaikovsky was a triumphant opening for the Orchestra’s visit to Japan. Long after the IPO performed “The Death of Tybalt” as an encore, the audience remained in the hall applauding and hoping for another bow by Maestro Mehta…he didn’t disappoint…[Read More]

IPO in Japan

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

  The Philharmonic returned to Japan for concerts in Tokyo at Suntory Hall, Bunka Kaikan and the NHK, Kukuoka, Osaka, Mie, Nagoya, then back to Tokyo. Upon returning to Tokyo, the Orchestra will join the Tokyo Ballet in two performances of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony; musicians, soloists, choir and dancers all choreographed on one stage. The IPO is no stranger to Tokyo: nature hikes, shopping, sushi – just great!

Bangkok Festival of Dance and Music

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

The Far East Tour of the IPO began with a return visit to the Bangkok Festival of Dance and Music under the patronage of the Queen of Thailand. The symphonic part of the concert was Mozart’s Linz Symphony and Gustav Mahler’s Fifth Symphony. Opening the concert was a special treat for the audience, Vivaldi’s concerto for 4 violins performed as Vivaldi probably first heard it, with four women of the orchestra playing the solo parts: Saida Barlev, Genia Pikovsky, Sharon…[Read More]

Back on Tour

by Peter Marck, IPO Principal Bassist

Three weeks ago the Israel Philharmonic returned from Budapest after 13 days in Siberia, the Baltic Countries and Eastern Europe; yesterday we landed in Bangkok for the beginning of the Far East tour. In between, we performed at Israel Music Week’s final concert and opened the IPO’s 79th Season with concerts of Ein Heldenleben and Mahler’s Second Symphony, The Resurrection. In all, we managed to squeeze in 13 rehearsals and 9 concerts. Denis Matsuyev, who was our host at the…[Read More]