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November 23, 24, 26, 27, 2008

Noam Sivan, piano

Navon Hall of JAMD

 

Noam Sivan

On Creative Performance
How can piano playing express the personal character of the performing artist while following faithfully the composer’s written orders at the same time? It seems that the huge amount of time dedicated to mastering the instrument and learning as much as possible on the music and the composer who conceived it does not leave enough energy for creative and spiritual growth. Therefore, in studying music there needs to be a healthy balance between three components: Creativity, Analysis, and Technique – representing the spiritual, intellectual, and physical. The creative element, ultimately, is the most important because that is the hallmark of the mature artist. Developing the imagination through improvisation and developing the analytic skills through understanding the music from a composer’s perspective complement one another. Both of them enable performing artists to enrich their spiritual world, feel closer to the experience of creating music, and as a result present to the audience during a concert the full scope of their musical personality.

                                                                                                                                                      Noam Sivan

A versatile musician, Noam Sivan combines piano performance, live improvisation, composition, and conducting. He has appeared as pianist and composer in the United States, Canada, England, Austria, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, and throughout his native Israel. His performing repertoire includes concertos from Mozart - with newly composed cadenzas - to Mr. Sivan’s own piano concerto, which he premiered in the double role of soloist & conductor. He has also performed the Asian premiere of the Viktor Ullmann’s Piano Concerto with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra.
Since his solo debut with the Haifa Symphony Orchestra, Noam Sivan has performed extensively and is known for his “fanciful improvisations” (Washington Post). In his piano recitals he links performance and composition through live improvisation, often improvising on suggested themes by the audience, and thus offers a new meaning to musical creativity and interpretation. His performance of Bach’s Goldberg Variations encored by an original improvisation on the piece was recorded for TV and broadcast on the New Israeli Cultural Channel. The recital was described as “the biggest surprise of the festival. Noam Sivan presented the variations confidently and fluently, which led to a moving experience… His improvisation on the Goldberg Variations reflected the excitement this feat creates in the listener” (Ha’aretz, Israel). Other solo programs have included The Piano Etude from Chopin to Ligeti, Ravel and Water Imagery, The Schoenberg Piano Fragments, and The Piano Transcription.
Noam Sivan’s compositions include the opera Fruits of Folia premiered by the Mannes Opera, Hommage à Ravel premiered by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, and the song-cycle The Cabin of Loneliness premiered by Talamus Voices and members of the Israel Philharmonic, conducted by the composer. Mr. Sivan has also composed music for dance, including a commissioned String Sextet from the Choreographic Institute of the New York City Ballet. His chamber and instrumental works have been performed by clarinetist Charles Neidich, New York Miniaturist Ensemble, Duquesne Contemporary Ensemble in Pittsburgh, Jerusalem Saxophone Quartet, and LINK Ensemble, among many others, and recorded for Koch International by pianist Yael Weiss (CD - “88 Keys to Joy”). Mr. Sivan’s Trio was played at the Marlboro Music Festival 2005 by recommendation of the festival’s artistic director Richard Goode. In summer 2008 he is invited to serve as the Composer in Residence at the Canandaigua Lake Chamber Music Festival. His transcription for solo violin of the Liszt Sonata in B minor is published by Carl Fischer.
Mr. Sivan is a faculty member at the Mannes College of Music in NYC, where he founded the “Improvisation Workshop”, and at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia. One of the active participants in his unique “Advanced Piano Seminars” at Curtis during 2007-2008 was Arthur Rubinstein Piano Master Competition prize winner Roman Rabinovich. Mr. Sivan has also given lectures, master classes and workshops at the SUNY Stony-Brook, CUNY Graduate Center, and the International Schoenberg Institute, just to mention a few among many others. He is currently a doctoral fellow at the Juilliard School under the guidance of Milton Babbitt. Noam Sivan holds a Master’s degree from Mannes College of Music where he studied piano with Edward Aldwell and Richard Goode; theory, analysis and improvisation with Carl Schachter; and composition with Robert Cuckson. Mr. Sivan holds double Bachelor’s degree from Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, as a composition student of Menachem Zur, and piano student of Vadim Monastirsky. His piano teacher from early childhood was his mother, Manuela Sivan. His studies over the years were supported by the America Israel Cultural Foundation.

Date / time Activity
Nov. 23, 2008, 10:00 a.m.

Piano master classes

Nov. 24, 2008, 10:00 a.m. Piano master classes
Nov. 24, 2008, 8:00 p.m. Piano recital
Nov. 26, 2008, 10:00 a.m. Piano master classes
Nov. 27, 2008, 10:00 a.m. Piano master classes

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