The Apache Pow Wow

Itzhak Perlman in Recital

Tanya Lee, Staff Writer

On May 12, violin legend Itzhak Perlman will be performing at the Walt Disney Concert Hall with his longtime accompanist, Rohan De Silva.

Perlman was born in Israel in 1945. He was initially trained at the Academy of Music in Tel Aviv, but later studied at the Juilliard School with Ivan Galamian and Dorothy DeLay. In 1964, he won the Leventritt Competition, which launched his career. In his earlier years, Perlman performed not as a soloist, but a conductor. He has conducted with the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, Philadelphia, and London Philharmonic, as well as at the Ravinia and OK Mozart festivals. He was the Music Advisor of the St. Louis Symphony from 2001 to 2004 and was Principal Guest Conductor of the Detroit Symphony from 2001 to 2005. He has traveled to South America, China, and Europe for numerous concerts.

Perlman has performed in some more notable performances. In 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 First Lady Laura Bush. In 2009, he premiered a piece at Barack Obama’s presidential inauguration alongside Anthony McGill, Gabriela Montero, and Yo-Yo Ma. He has performed on The Late Show with David Letterman, Sesame Street, The Frugal Gourmet, The Tonight Show, and numerous Live from Lincoln Center broadcasts. He also narrated “Visions of Israel”, an episode of the Visions series on PBS. In 1994, he hosted the U.S. broadcast of the Three Tenors, Encore! live from the Dodger Stadium. In 2006, he was seen by hundreds of millions of people through the 78th Annual Academy Awards telecast, performing a medley of the five film scores nominated for Best Original score. He also performed as a soloist in the movies Schindler’s List, Hero, and Memoirs of a Geisha.

If that’s not impressive enough, he’s also received many awards. In 2003, Perlman received a Kennedy Center Honor. He received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement award in 2008, and his pieces have often appeared on best-seller charts and have won him fifteen Grammy awards. Many universities, including Harvard and Yale, have granted him honorary degrees. During Juilliard’s 100th commencement ceremony, he was awarded an honorary doctorate and centennial medal. President Reagan has honored him with a “Medal of Liberty”, and President Clinton awarded him the “National Medal of Arts”. In fact, he was even the subject of Itzhak, a documentary released earlier this year by Alison Chernick.

All in all, this concert is definitely worth attending. The program consists of Sonatina No. 1 in D major by Schubert, “Kreutzer” from Violin Sonata No. 9 by Beethoven, and Sonatina by Dvořák. You can find tickets at If you can’t attend the concert, you can also find past performances by Perlman on YouTube.

Photo Courtesy of LYRICOPERA.ORG

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Itzhak Perlman in Recital