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Mordecai Shehori (Piano, Arranger)

Born: April 20, 1946 - Tel-Aviv, Israel

The Israeli-born American pianist, Mordecai Shehori, was born into an artistically gifted family in Israel. He embraces a rich pianistic tradition that emphasizes a unique physical and spiritual approach to music making, as taught to him early on by the legendary pianist Mindru Katz. At 9 Shehori gave his first public performance. Later he received first prize at the Beethoven Competition and received the American Israel Cultural Foundation Award. He came to America to continue his musical studies and graduated from the Juilliard School of Music in New York, under the tutelage of Beveridge Webster, and later studied with Claude Frank at the Mannes College of Music.

Mordecai Shehori made his New York debut after winning the 1974 Jeunesses Musicales Competition. He concertizes in the USA, Canada, and Europe and has performed at various music festivals and at the White House. Today he is internationally recognized for his brilliant virtuosity, sophisticated and inspired interpretation, and consummate musicianship. He has performed and recorded a wide-ranging repertoire. His annual New York concerts (27 different recital programs to date) are eagerly anticipated by a broad audience of musically sophisticated listeners. "Mr. Shehori has developed a cult following in New York piano circles, for good reason. He certainly possesses a suitably big technique. Still, mindless and heartless keyboard fluency is not uncommon nowadays and perhaps never was. What sets Mr. Shehori apart from most virtuosos with their off-the-shelf performances is the poetic inwardness and rapturous intensity of his playing." (Donal Henahan, The New York Times).

In February 1987, Mordecai Shehori played two pianos with Vladimir Horowitz. Shehori accompanied Vladimir Horowitz in W.A. Mozart's Piano Concerto K.488, playing the orchestral reduction on second piano, while Vladimir Horowitz played the concerto's solo part. This took place in the basement of Steinway & Sons in New York City. Later that year, Vladimir Horowitz traveled to Milan and recorded the concerto for Deutsche Grammophon with the La Scala Theater Orchestra conducted by Carlo Maria Giulini. Vladimir Horowitz was so pleased with Shehori's accompaniment that he began to invite him to his home on East 94th Street. Shehori spent many evenings with the Horowitzes. Shehori acted as page turner for Vladimir Horowitz in what turned out to be the sessions for his final recording in Vladimir Horowitz's New York home from October 24, 1989 to November 1, 1989. Vladimir Horowitz died just a few days later, on November 5, 1989. Shehori has cited his friendship and artistic collaboration with Vladimir Horowitz as a significant source of knowledge and inspiration, along with one-on-one sessions with such important pianists as Stefan Askenase (a student of Franz Liszt's disciple Emil von Sauer), Gina Bachauer, Alexis Weissenberg, and violinist Nathan Milstein.

When not concertizing throughout the world, Mordecai Shehori resides in New York City, where he is sought after and admired as a highly skilled teacher. He devotes much of his time to teaching the art of the piano to students ranging from music lovers to professional pianists, including graduates of the Juilliard School, the Manhattan School of Music, and the Mannes College of Music.

Recently Mordecai Shehori relocated to Las Vegas where he enjoys healthier weather and beautiful mountain views, allowing him to focus more intensely on concert preparations and on producing rare historical recordings of legendary musicians. He is the founder and president of Cembal d'amour, a classical music recording company dedicated to the release of rare historical recordings by such legendary figures as Jascha Heifetz, Simon Barere, Henryk Szeryng, Mindru Katz, Berl Senofsky, and David Nadien. Shehori’s own critically acclaimed commercial recordings for Connoisseur Society and Cembal d'amour include music by L.v. Beethoven, Frédéric Chopin, Scarlatti, Franz Liszt, Rameau, Sergei Rachmaninov, and many others. He is a two-time recipient of the La Gesse Foundation Award, and is listed on the roster of Steinway & Sons.

A genuine Renaissance man, endowed with overwhelming and multi-faceted gifts, Mordecai Shehori's uncompromising artistry is evident in every note that he plays. He possesses the rare ability to bring music to such a high level that it becomes a transcendental experience for the listener. In this world of music on demand and instant gratification, many pianists' music reaches our ears; Shehori's touches the inner depths of our soul.

More Photos

Source: Cembal d'amour Website (Author: Charles McLimans); Wikipedia Website (February 2011)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (March 2011)

Mordecai Shehori: Short Biography | Recordings of Instrumental Works | Piano Transcriptions: Works | Recordings

Links to other Sites

Cembal d'amour: Artists' Biographies
Mordecai Shehori on Facebook

Mordecai Shehori (Wikipedia)

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