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Known for her emotive power, clarity of interpretations, and captivating programming, pianist Ofra Yitzhaki has performed for audiences at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, the Taiwan National Concert Hall, Berlin’s Museum of Musical Instruments, and at the Vilnius Palace of Arts. Her recital at the Klavierfestival Ruhr — playing Bach alongside European premieres of Israeli and American music — was described by the Westfaelische Rundschau as “an evening with soul, poetry, and glorious sounds.”
Yitzhaki has performed over thirty concerti—from Bartok and Haydn, to Ligeti and Messiaen with the Berlin Symphony, the Romanian Radio Orchestra, as well as both the American and Jerusalem Symphony Orchestras. Committed to new music, she has premiered more than 50 works for solo and chamber ensembles. Her close collaboration with composer Milton Babbitt led to a successful premier of his music at Carnegie Hall, and her work with the Parisian Ensemble Intercontemporain was described by the Israeli Ha’aretz as “a new, superb league for the performance of modern music.”
Yitzhaki’s dynamic programming often pairs old and new works to reveal how each can illuminate the other. She’s programmed C.P.E. Bach’s fantasies alongside Georg Friedrich Haas’s music for piano and electronics, Scarlatti’s miniature sonatas with Ives’ enormous Sonata No.1, and French Impressionist composers opposite new music of her native Israel. Recognizing her commitment to engaging audiences, the Hessentag Festival in Germany commissioned her to write and perform recital programs with actors narrating letters between Mozart and his father and between Brahms and the Schumanns.
One of the last pupils of Paul Badura-Skoda, Yitzhaki has recently focused on solo recitals of Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier. Additionally, she is now working on a premiere recording of the piano music of Josef Tal, co-produced by the Hessischer Rundfunk and the Culture Radio of Berlin.
On faculty at Tel Aviv University’s Buchmann-Mehta School of Music, Yitzhaki is also the artistic director of the “Voice of Music in the Upper Galilee,” Israel’s oldest and largest chamber music festival. She holds a Doctorate in Piano Performance from the Juilliard School.