Hailed by the press for his “bold, rich sound” (Strad Magazine) and “nuanced musicianship,” (New York Times) Israeli Cellist Michael Katz has appeared as a soloist and chamber musician in venues such as Carnegie Hall, David Geffen Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Kennedy Center, the Kimmel Center, the Van Wezel Performing Arts Center (Sarasota, FL), Oji Hall (Tokyo, Japan), Philips Hall (Eindhoven, Netherlands), Teatro Cervantes (Malaga, Spain), Lucerne KKL (Lucerne, Switzerland), and Henry Crown Auditorium (Jerusalem, Israel). He has performed at music festivals such as Ravinia, Music@Menlo, Mostly Mozart, Festival Mozaic, Yellow Barn, Lucerne, Holland Music Sessions, Sarasota, Methow Valley, Classical Bridge, Cooperstown, Green Box, Bard, Copenhagen, Malaga Clasica, Perlman Music Program, Orford, and Kol Hamusica, and has collaborated as a soloist with conductors such as James DePriest, David Stern, Barbara Yahr, and Dongmin Kim. His musicianship has been recognized with many awards, among them all three awards at the 2011 Aviv Competition, first prizes at the 2010 Juilliard School’s Concerto Competition, and the 2005 Turjeman Competition, as well as awards from the America Israel Cultural Foundation and the Ronen Foundation.
High in demand as a chamber musician, Mr. Katz has collaborated and performed with artists such as Itzhak Perlman, Midori, Donald Weilerstein, Daniel Philips, Peter Wiley, Anthony Marwood, Peter Frankl, Charles Neidich, Roger Tapping, Lucy Chapman. As the cellist of the Lysander Piano Trio, he was a winner of the 2012 Concert Artists Guild Competition, and was awarded first prizes at the 2011 Coleman Competition and 2011 J.C. Arriaga Competition. Their first album “After a Dream” was released in 2014 on CAG Records and was praised by the New York Times for its “polished and spirited interpretations.”
Deeply committed to community outreach and education, from 2014-2016 Mr. Katz was a Fellow in Carnegie Hall’s Ensemble Connect. He was previously selected to be part of a special string quartet led by Midori to present formal and outreach concerts in Myanmar and Japan as part of the 2013-2014 International Community Engagement Program, and was invited to return to the program in 2016-2017 for concerts in Nepal and Japan. Mr. Katz is a faculty member at the Csehy Summer School of Music and the Chamber Music Institute in Stamford, CT and has served as an adjunct cello professor at Nyack College from 2015-2017.
Mr. Katz has a great passion for expanding the cello repertoire with both lesser known and contemporary works. He has premiered Works by Timo Andres, Ofer Ben-Amots, Christopher Cerone, Jakub Ciupinski, Ann Cleare, Gilad Cohen, Bryce Dessner, Mohammed Fairouz, Daniel Felsenfeld, Vivian Fung, Him Sophy, Juan Pablo Jofre, David T. Little, Zhou Long, Eric Moe, Reinaldo Moya, Sergiu Natra, Olga Neuwirth, Jonathan Newman, Malcolm Payton, Paola Prestini, Chris Rogerson, Huang Ruo, Caroline Shaw, Zhou Tian, Julian Wachner, Yehudi Wyner, and others.
Born in Tel-Aviv Israel, Mr. Katz began his cello studies at age 7. Among his teachers in Israel were Zvi Plesser, Hillel Zori and the late Mikhail Khomitzer. Mr. Katz received his Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory where he studied with Laurence Lesser, his Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School where he studied with Joel Krosnick, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from SUNY Stony Brook as a student of Colin Carr.
Photo credit: New York Classical Players.