Undeniably the reigning virtuoso of the violin, Itzhak Perlman enjoys superstar status rarely afforded a classical musician. Beloved for his charm and humanity as well as his talent, he is treasured by audiences throughout the world who respond not only to his remarkable artistry, but also to the irrepressible joy of making music, which he communicates. In January 2009, Mr. Perlman was honored to take part in the Inauguration of President Barack Obama, premiering a piece written for the occasion by John Williams and performing with clarinetist Anthony McGill, pianist Gabriela Montero, and cellist Yo-Yo Ma. In December 2003 the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts granted Mr. Perlman a Kennedy Center Honor celebrating his distinguished achievements and contributions to the cultural and educational life of our nation. In May 2007, he performed at the State Dinner for Her Majesty The Queen and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, hosted by President George W. Bush and Mrs. Bush at the White House.
Mr. Perlman's 2011-12 season will take his performances as soloist to both new and familiar major centers throughout the world. In fall of 2011, he joins the San Francisco Symphony at Davies Hall under Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas in a gala concert to open their centennial season, and returns to the same orchestra in April 2012 on a play/conduct program. In October 2011, Mr. Perlman will travel to Asia for recitals in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau with pianist and frequent collaborator, Rohan De Silva. Other highlights of his 2011-12 season include the gala opening of the new Kaufman Center in Kansas City, Missouri with the Kansas City Symphony, a play/conduct performance with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, and recitals across North America including Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Diego and Washington, DC. Mr. Perlman also appears with students and alumni from the Perlman Music Program at the Arsht Center in Miami, Florida and Koerner Hall in
In addition to his many orchestral and recital appearances throughout the world, Mr. Perlman performs as conductor with leading orchestras. He was Music Advisor of the St. Louis Symphony from 2002 to 2004, and he was Principal Guest Conductor of the Detroit Symphony from 2001 to 2005. He has performed as conductor with the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Boston Symphony, National Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Montreal, Atlanta and Toronto, as well as at the Ravinia and OK Mozart festivals. Internationally, Mr. Perlman has conducted the Berlin Philharmonic, Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Philharmonic, the English Chamber Orchestra, and
the Israel Philharmonic.
He proudly possesses four Emmy Awards and fifteen Grammy awards. He performed at the 2006 Academy Awards and at the Juilliard School Centennial gala, broadcast nationally on Live from Lincoln Center. One of Mr. Perlman's proudest achievements is his collaboration with film score composer John Williams in Steven Spielberg's Academy Award winning film Schindler's List, in which he performed the violin solos.
Mr. Perlman devotes considerable time to education, both in his participation each summer in the Perlman Music Program and his teaching at the Juilliard School, where he holds the Dorothy Richard Starling Foundation Chair. He was awarded an honorary doctorate and a centennial medal on the occasion of Julliard's 100th commencement ceremony in May 2005.
Cantor Yitzchok Meir Helfgot was born in Tel Aviv, Israel. From the tender age of five, after hearing Moshe Koussevitzky's recording of "Akavia Ben Mahalalel," Yitzchok Meir knew what his life's calling would be. At just eight years old, Cantor Helfgot recorded his first works, and then spent much of his childhood and teenage years studying voice and nussach
(the art of prayer).
Cantor Helfgot held his first concert at twenty-three years old, performing three great works-Zibert's "Mimkomcha," Kwartin's "Tiher Rabbi Yishmael" and Rosenblatt's "Ad Hena"-all of which were masterfully executed and admired by those in attendance. It was at this point that the world began to realize the divine gift in Cantor Helfgot, taking us back to the Golden Age of Rosenblatt, Koussevitzky, Kwartin, Sirota and Hershman.
Truly living up to his name, Helfgot (literally translated as someone who helps God) rouses all who hear his golden voice to new spiritual heights.
Leading the way in today's revival of liturgical music, Cantor Helfgot has performed in concerts spanning six continents, where time after time he has left audiences spellbound. From New York to Beijing, from South Africa to Italy, and from Russia to Australia, Cantor Helfgot has drawn record crowds. Concertgoers agree it is almost impossible not to be warmed by the fire of his magnificent, soulful voice. Just when you think he has reached his peak, Helfgot takes you higher.
Cantor Helfgot currently serves as Chief Cantor of the Park East Synagogue in New York City. He appears regularly for Shabbatot around the world, and is currently booked for Shabbatot and concerts through the spring of 2008.
Cantor Helfgot's recent recording, entitled "Barchi Nafshi" Bless Hashem O My Sou" and his latest album "Avot," have broken Jewish record sales.
Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot with Itzhak Perlman - A Yidishe Mame
Vehu Rachum - Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot
"It's so easy for him...it's just effortless," says legendary violinist Itzhak Perlman, explaining what led him to pursue his inspired collaboration with Israeli-born and celebrated Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot. The melding of Perlman's soulful tone and virtuosic technique with Cantor Helfgot's spellbinding tenor come together perfectly on their new album, Eternal Echoes: Songs and Dances for the Soul.
35 New 'ON' this week: 75 Total SYND: PRI/Classical 24, APM/Performance Today Direct: SiriusXM, Music Choice, DMX Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Philadelphia, Wash DC, Minneapolis, Atlanta, Houston, Denver, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Detroit, Berkeley CA, San Antonio Online: Taintradio, RadioIO, WGOE
Itzhak Perlman invites you to his Chanukah Radio Party at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13, on Classical MPR. Join the superstar violinist as he tells the story of the Jewish festival of lights, and shares his favorite recordings for the holiday - some serious, some silly. This engaging one-hour special includes numbers from Itzhak Perlman's radio-addicted childhood in Israel; evocative songs in Yiddish and Ladino; classical music that revolves around the Maccabee heroes of the story; and Chanukah gems by American folk singers. The master storyteller also regales you with jokes and memories, plus tales of three classic Chanukah symbols: the menorah, the latke, and, of course, the dreidel. A good time for the whole family, at Itzhak Perlman's Chanukah Radio Party!
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On Friday, December 23, Itzhak Perlman invites you to his Chanukah Radio Party. Join the superstar violinist as he tells the story of the Jewish festival of lights, and shares his favorite recordings for the holiday – some serious, some silly. This engaging one-hour special includes numbers from Itzhak Perlman's radio-addicted childhood in Israel; evocative songs in Yiddish and Ladino; classical music that revolves around the Maccabee heroes of the story; and Chanukah gems by American folk singers. The master storyteller also regales you with jokes and memories, plus tales of three classic Chanukah symbols: the menorah, the latke, and, of course, the dreidel. A good time for the whole family, at Itzhak Perlman's Chanukah Radio Party!
photo - (Kim Nowacki/WQXR)
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PBS: Great Performances will air violinist Itzhak Perlman and cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot performing the opening song "Yism'Khu (They Shall Rejoice)" backed by The Klezmer Conservatory Band and The Rejoice Chamber Orchestra on Thursday, August 28 at 9 pm. New Yorkers take note: Thirteen will air the program nearly a month later on Sunday, September 21 at 7pm on THIRTEEN, not PBS.
In Rejoice is set to be an evening of cantorial masterpieces, Yiddish folk and theater tunes, Hassidic melodies, and klezmer instrumentals; showcasing liturgical and traditional works in new arrangements for both chamber orchestra and klezmer settings. The music of Rejoice with Itzhak Perlman and Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot defines the similarities between Perlman's classical technique and Helfgot's astounding voice, a long awaited collaboration.
"It was a dream to someday sing with him," said Helfgot. "And now the dream has become real." The Joshua Waletzky directed program also features works by Elie Wiesel, Joel Grey, and Neil Sedaka.
Perlman feels the collaboration represents "the completion of a cycle" of accompanying three idols: lacido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, and now chief cantor at Manhattan's Park East Synagogue, Helfgot. Perlman and Helfgot have also recently collaborated in Great Performances 40th Anniversary Celebration.
With piano accompaniment by music director Dr. Hankus Netsky Perlman and Helfgot present an evening of material that is equal parts as joyous and spiritual. The program will vary, ranging from Jack Yellen and Lou Pollack's "A Yidishe Mame" to Shlomo Carlbach ("The Singing Rabbi")'s "Adir Hu" and Cantor Israel Schorr's "Sheyibone Beys Hamikdosh." WATCH A PREVIEW
Most teenagers don't get the chance to josh around with famed violinist and conductor Itzhak Perlman, but some, who have what the maestro calls "fiddling abilities," were enjoying that privilege for several weeks in Israel. The 36 teens came from abroad to attend the Perlman Music Program, established by Perlman's wife, Toby, herself an accomplished violinist. The PMP offers musical training to string players between the ages of 12 and 18 "of rare and special talent," according to the program's website - including access to Perlman himself. The residencies take place in New York, Florida, Vermont and Israel.
READ THE FULL Times of Isreal PIECE
Itzhak Perlman played to a packed house in his first-ever stop in Modesto CA last Saturday January 18. Playing the Gallo Center for the Arts, Mr. Perlman was joined by his long-time collaborator, the Sri Lankan born pianist Rohan de Silva. The program included: Beethoven Sonata No. 3 in E Flat Major for Violin and Piano, Op. 12, No. 3, Franck Sonata for Violin and Piano in A Major and Tartini Sonata in G Minor for Violin and Continuo "Devil's Thrill." READ THE Modesto Bee STORY.
The Green Music Center's Weill Hall presents legendary violinist Itzhak Perlman. TONIGHT!! Saturday September 21.
Sold out concert in spectacular Sonoma County CA surroundings. READ THE examiner.com ARTICLE
READ THE San Francisco Classical Voice ARTICLE
Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur bring a flood of memories, many of them associated with music. In this one-hour special, the superstar violinist Itzhak Perlman shares a wide variety of recordings that have special meaning for him, including several of his own performances. Ranging from classical gems to cantorial singing to raucous klezmer fiddling, the music will spark warm associations and an emotional response for all listeners. Hear this beautiful music on WRTI: Philadelphia TODAY!! Saturday, Sept. 6th, 4 to 5 pm.
Student violinists from Sarasota and Manatee counties in Florida between the ages of 8 and 18 are invited to audition to perform with the Perlman Music Program String Orchestra during the PMP's Sarasota Winter Residency. Violinists will perform Vivaldi's Violin Concerto in A minor, Op. 3, under the director of violinist and conductor Itzhak Perlman, at a rehearsal and performance on Jan. 2 2014.
READ THE FULL Arts Sarasota PIECE
"It's so easy for him…it's just effortless," says legendary violinist Itzhak Perlman, explaining what led him to pursue his inspired collaboration with Israeli-born and celebrated Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot. The melding of Perlman's soulful tone and virtuosic technique with Cantor Helfgot's spellbinding tenor come together perfectly on their new album, Eternal Echoes: Songs and Dances for the Soul, available from Sony Masterworks on September 4, 2012.
While rooted in the cantorial-liturgical tradition of Jewish music, the ten tracks on Eternal Echoes encompass a wide range of sonic modes and musical moods. Perlman has said that his idea "was to do 'Jewish comfort music' - everything that I recognize from my childhood is in this program." The recording grew out of musical conversations with Helfgot and long-time collaborator Hankus Netsky. The two masters began to explore the confluences of sound between the violinist's famed classical technique (informed by a longtime interest in Jewish traditional music – Perlman has recorded a number of klezmer albums) with Helfgot's magnificent golden voice, which has made the cantor a star of today's liturgical music revival.
"I always find that there is a real communication between voice and violin," says Perlman, who also has recorded with Placido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti. Like Perlman, Cantor Helfgot has performed globally to rave reviews. Says Helfgot: "this was the fulfillment of a dream. When I was a child growing up I always knew about Itzhak Perlman, so of course I said yes, right away! I am very happy this dream became real."
To craft the arrangements and play the piano parts, Perlman called upon Netsky, with whom he had collaborated on past klezmer recordings. Netsky aimed for "a beautiful chamber orchestra sound, nothing too ostentatious, to really let the soloists shine." For five of the pieces he developed orchestral arrangements, and for the rest, other combinations that reflected the traditions of this music. "Cantorial music really developed almost like opera for people who didn't have opera," the pianist-arranger explains. "The text is the religious text, and you paint a picture with it musically."
These exquisitely crafted musical pictures include a stately and dramatic arrangement of "Sheyibone Bays Hamikdosh," a tune Perlman remembers from Shabbat morning prayers in Israel; the operatic "Shoyfer Shel Moshiakh ," written by Abraham Goldfaden, father of the Yiddish theater; the shepherd's lament "Romanian Doyne"; "Dem Trisker Rebn's Nign," a song Perlman learned from his klezmer collaborators; "Mizmor L'Dovid," a setting of Psalm 23 which may be the most famous piece on the album; and "A Dudele," which comes from the folk rather than the liturgical tradition. The album wraps up with "Kol Nidrei ," the famous prayer for Yom Kippur, in a simple chamber-music setting that contrasts tastefully with past grandiose arrangements familiar to fans of singers like Richard Tucker and Jan Peerce.
As reflected in its title, Eternal Echoes: Songs and Dances for the Soul evokes both history and permanence: "There is so much history in this music," says Perlman. "For me, every little musical groan or sob that happens is Jewish history. It makes you think."