Midori receives Great Immigrant honour from the Carnegie Corporation of New York
Midori has been named as one of the Carnegie Corporation of New York's Great Immigrants for 2019. Every Fourth of July, the Corporation salutes 38 naturalised citizens who strengthen the United States' economy, culture and communities.
The Corporation's founder, Andrew Carnegie, was himself a naturalised citizen. He was born in Scotland and rose out of poverty to become one of the greatest contributors to American industry and philanthropy. He was a staunch advocate for immigration and the Great Immigrant initiative was founded in 2006 to honour his legacy. To date it has honoured nearly 600 individuals.
In addition to her concert career, Midori is heavily involved in expanding access to classical music and musical education around the world. In 1992 Midori founded the nonprofit Midori & Friends, which has brought music and vocal instruction and musical performances to more than 200,000 New York City students. As part of Music Sharing, another organization she founded, Midori joins young musicians for community performances in Asia, visiting refugee camps, hospitals, and schools in countries from Myanmar to Vietnam. She was designated a United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2007.
Midori tours the United States with Jean-Yves Thibaudet
Midori and Jean-Yves Thibaudet embark on a recital tour of the United States this month, giving four concerts across the country from 6 April 2019. During the tour Midori and Thibaudet perform a programme drawing on the music of Schumann, Fauré, Debussy and Enescu.
The tour takes them to the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts on 6 April, Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco on 7 April, San Diego's Conrad Prebys Music Center on 12 April and finally the McCarter Theatre Center at Princeton University on 15 April.
Midori then travels to Japan for a second tour this month, this time with Paavo Järvi and the Estonian Festival Orchestra. Performing in Hamamatsu, Fukui, Nagoya, Osaka an Tokyo, Midori is the soloist for Prokofiev Violin Concerto No.1.
Midori performs Bach on tour in Europe with the Munich Chamber Orchestra
Midori joins the Munich Chamber Orchestra on tour in Europe this month, beginning with a concert at Regensburg's Audimax on 10 March 2019. The tour also visits the Heinrich-Lades Halle Erlangen (11 March), Müpa Budapest (13 March) and Olten Theatre (15 March).
During the tour Midori performs as the soloist in two Bach violin concertos: the Violin Concerto in D minor, BWV.1052, and Violin Concerto No.2 in E major, BWV.1042. In recent seasons she has released a recording of the composer's Sonatas and Partitas on Onyx and also recorded them on film for Accentus at Schloss Köthen, where the pieces were composed. Watch the trailer for the film below.
Midori addresses Pope Francis & world leaders at the International Fund for Agricultural Development's Governing Council
On 14 February 2019, Midori appeared at the United Nations' International Fund for Agricultural Development's Governing Council in Rome. Following a solo recital, Midori called on Pope Francis and other world leaders in attendance to believe in the transformative power of women and girls in underserved remote communities.
Midori is United Nations Messenger for Peace and recounted her experience during a recent visit to IFAD-supported rural villages in Vietnam's Tuyen Quang province: “What I saw was the power of equality, responsibility, and hope. And the difference people can make when they feel in control.”
Globally, rural women and girls are often more deeply impacted than men and boys by poverty, hunger, malnutrition, food insecurity and global economic crises. They have fewer market opportunities than men, and frequently have weak or non-existent land rights. But, according to a World Bank report, it is estimated that women's food production could increase by 20 to 30 per cent if they had the same access to resources and inputs as men.
In Tuyen Quang province, IFAD has supported women's participation in farming groups and has increased their access to financial services, markets and private agribusiness investors. As a result, the number of rural households suffering from food shortages has been reduced by 25 per cent.
Midori performs Schumann Violin Concerto at Komische Oper Berlin
Midori returns to Berlin on 22 February 2019 to perform Schumann Violin Concerto at the Komische Oper. The concert is conducted by Hermann Bäumer.
The following week, Midori joins the North Netherlands Symphony Orchestra for three concerts from 28 February. Conducted by Elim Chan, Midori is the soloist for Brahms Violin Concerto.
Midori returns to the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
Midori returns to France this month to perform with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France on 5 December 2018. Performing under the baton of Leonard Slatkin, Midori is the soloist in Bernstein’s Serenade. The concert will be recorded for delayed broadcast on France Musique on 3 January.
Midori has a long standing relationship with this orchestra with whom she recorded Peter Eötvös’s DoReMi in 2016. Click here to listen.
Midori & Kian Soltani join the Boston Symphony for the Bernstein Centennial Celebration at Tanglewood
Midori and Kian Soltani join the Boston Symphony Orchestra and a host of musical stars at Tangelwood on 25 August 2018 for a special gala concert celebrating the 100th birthday of Leonard Bernstein. The first half of the concert features Bernstein's own music, after which the assembled musicians perform some of his favourite works from the wider classical canon. Mahler's Resurrection Symphony brings the concert to a close.
Midori and Soltani perform two of Bernstein's own works. Midori joins the Boston Symphony and conductor Christoph Eschenbach as the soloist in Bernstein's Serenade, which she famously performed under the baton of the composer himself at the age of 14. Meanwhile, Soltani performs Bernstein's Mass: Meditation No.3 for Orchestra and Cello.
Midori embarks on recital tour of Germany
Midori embarks on a recital tour of Germany with pianist Özgür Aydin this month, beginning at the Kultursommer Nordhessen on 1 July 2018. Midori and Aydin also perform in Detmold on 3 July and at the Brandenburgische Sommerkonzerte on 7 July. The programme features works by Mozart, Franck, Schubert and Respighi.
Further this month Midori performs Schumann Violin Concerto in D minor with the NDR Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Christoph Eschenbach in two performances on 13 and 14 July as part of Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival.
Midori returns to the Deutsche Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
Midori returns to perform with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin in concert at the Berliner Philharmonie on 13 May. Midori joins the orchestera and conductor Constantinos Carydis as the soloist for Bernstein Serenade.
Further this month she returns to the Sinfonieorchester Basel for two performances of Péter Eötvös DoReMi under the baton of Hans Drewanz on 16 and 17 May.
Midori embarks on trio tour of Germany & the UK
Midori joins hertrio partners Jonathan Biss and Antoine Lederlin for a 10-day tour this month, beginning in Basel on 9 January 2018. The tour then continues on to Ansbach (10 January), Stuttgart (11 January), Munich (13 January), Halle (14 January) and London, culminating with a concert at Wigmore Hall on 16 January.
During the tour, Midori and her partners perform a programme featuring Beethoven Piano Trio No.2 in G Major, Schumann Fantasiestuecke and Dvorak Piano Trio No.2 in F Minor.
Midori performs Tchaikovsky with the Beethoven Orchester Bonn
Midori returns to Bonn for two concerts this month on 10 and 12 November 2017. She joins the Beethoven Orchester Bonn and conductor Dirk Kaftan to perform Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in D major, Op.35. The concerts are the first of a busy month for Midori; she then travels to Naples, Florida, for two performances of Sibelius Violin Concerto with Joshua Weilerstein and the Naples Philharmonic and then then continues on to Buenos Aires to perform Bernstein Serenade with the Buenos Aires Philharmonic at the Teatro Colon on 23 November.
Midori also performs in recital with pianist Ieva Jokubaviciute throughout November. Performing a programme featuring Hindemith Violin Sonata in C major, Brahms Violin Sonata No.2 in A major, Op.100 'Thun', Schubert Violin Sonata in G minor, D.408 and Enescu Violin Sonata No.3 in A minor, Midori and Jokubaviciute perform at the Ehrbar Saal in Vienna on 3 November, National Forum of Music in Wroclaw on 5 November and Auditorio Santa Ursula in Lima on 21 November.
Midori performs Bernstein Serenade with the Wrocław Philharmonic
Midori joins the Wrocław Philharmonic Orchestra for two performances of Bernstein Serenade from 6 October 2017. The first performance takes place at the orchestra's home at the National Forum of Music in Wrocław, with the second taking place at the Brucknerhaus in Linz on 9 October. Midori first performed the Serenade when she was only 14 years old in an iconic performance at Tanglewood with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Bernstein himself.
Midori returns to Wrocław in November with pianist Ieva Jokubaviciute, performing a programme of Hindemith, Brahms, Schubert and Enescu. The concert is the final performance in a tour covering Central America and Europe, beginning in Medellin on 24 October. The duo then continue on to Mexico City on 26 October and then Vienna and Hamburg in November.
Midori performs Tchaikovsky in Shanghai & Beijing
Midori joins the Sydney Symphony Orchestra for two performances of Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in D major this month, at Shanghai Symphony Hall on 13 September and the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing on 16 September 2017. Both concerts are conducted by David Robertson.
Her performance of Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto at Aspen Music Festival in 2016 was met with high acclaim by the press:
"Her playing spilled out with presence…the result was sense of perfection."
Seen and Heard International, July 2016
Midori & Noah Bendix-Balgley teach and perform at Domaine Forget International Festival
Midori and Noah Bendix-Balgley travel to Canada this month for masterclasses and performances at Domaine Forget International Festival, which overlooks the St Lawrence River in Québec.
Bendix-Balgley begins a week of masterclasses on 16 July, teaching students at the Domaine Forget Academy. His week at the festival culminates in two performances. The first, a chamber recital on 21 July with David Gillham (violin), Miguel da Silva (viola), Jocelyne Bastien (viola), Johannes Moser (cello), Elizabeth Dolin (cello) and Philip Chiu (piano), features performances of Mendelssohn Piano Trio No.1 in D minor, Op.49 and Brahms String Sextet No.1 in B-flat major, Op.18. Bendix-Balgley then joins the McGill Chamber Orchestra on 23 July to perform Mozart Violin Concerto No.5 'Turkish' and Vivaldi The Four Seasons.
Midori arrives at Domaine Forget on 30 July for a week of masterclasses and private lessons. She ends her time at the festival with a performance of Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in D major, Op.35 with the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec on August 5 under the baton of Jacques Lacombe.
Midori returns to Italy with the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini
Midori returns to Italy on 20 April 2017 to perform Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini and conductor Speranza Scappuci at the Teatro Regio di Parma. A second performance follows on 22 April.
Elsewhere this month, Midori travels to Vienna to perform works by Schubert and Brahms in recital at the Wiener Konzerthaus. She then returns to the US in May for performances with the Cincinnati Symphony.
Midori embarks on recital tour of Germany & Austria
Midori begins March with a recital tour of Germany and Austria alongside her duo partner Ieva Jokubaviciute, beginning in Kaiserslautern on 2 March 2017. The duo perform a programme of sonatas by Mozart, Brahms, Schubert and Ravel.
The tour continues to Halle on 4 March before concluding at St. Pölten on 5 March. Further highlights for Midori this spring include recitals at the Musikverein in Graz and at the Wiener Staatsoper, as well as Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini.
Midori performs in recital at the Cartagena International Music Festival
Midori travels to South America this month for a recital at the Cartagena International Music Festival on 13 January 2016.
Midori is joined for the recital by pianist Ieva Jokubaviciute at Santa Teresa Chapel, where they perform a programme of Brahms Violin Sonata No.1 in G major, Schubert Violin Sonata in A minor and Ravel Violin Sonata No.2 in G major.
She then returns to the United States for concerts with the Pittsburgh Symphony and Manfred Honeck.
Midori plays Beethoven in return to the Philadelphia Orchestra
Midori returns to the Philadelphia Orchestra this month, giving three performances of Beethoven Violin Concerto at Verizon Hall on 3, 4 and 5 November 2016.
The programme for the concerts, conducted by Louis Langrée, also includes Moz-Art a la Haydn by Schnittke and Brahms Symphony No.2.
Midori continues Music Sharing programme with masterclasses in Tokyo
Midori returns to Japan to give masterclasses in Tokyo from 30 May until the 23 June 2016 as part of the Music Sharing programme. The programme's mission is to make both classical and traditional Japanese music of the highest artistic standard available to children. It started as the Japanese office of Midori and Friends, which was founded by Midori in New York in 1992, and aims to bring music into the lives of people who may not otherwise have involvement with the arts.
During her time in Japan, Midori also tours the country with pianist and regular collaborator Özgür Aydin, visiting cities including Tokyo, Osaka and Nagano.
Midori tours the Netherlands with Het Gelders Orkest
Midori embarks on a tour of the Netherlands with the Het Gelders Orkest and their chief conductor Antonello Manacorda from 26 May 2016. Midori joins the orchestra to perform Korngold Violin Concerto in D major in Apeldoorn, Nijmegen and Arnhem. Alongside the Korngold, the orchestra also performs Beethoven Coriolan Overture and Brahms Symphony No. 3.
Midori recently performed a string of recitals and concerts in the USA, including recitals with regular collaborator Özgür Aydin and performances with the Pacific Symphony Orchestra.
Midori joins Orchestra Filarmonica del Teatro La Fenice and Omer Meir Wellber for European tour
Midori starts the new year with four performances with Orchestra Filarmonica del Teatro La Fenice under the baton of Omer Meir Wellber, for the orchestra’s first ever international symphonic tour commencing on 8 January 2016.
After a first performance on the 8 January at the orchestra’s home in Venice, La Fenice Theatre, the tour continues to Baden-Baden Festspielhaus on 9 January, Dortmund Konzerthaus on 10 January and finishes at Eindhoven Muziekgebouw on 11 January. Midori performs Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto alongside Brahms Symphony No.2 in the second half of the concert.
Further engagements for Midori in January include Kansas City Symphony, where she also performs Tchaikovsky, and the IRIS Orchestra in the United States.
Midori releases recording of Bach’s complete Partitas and Sonatas
Midori’s recording of Bach’s complete Partitas and Sonatas is released on Onyx Classics worldwide on 30 October 2015. The double CD, recorded at the WDR Studios in Cologne, is the artist’s second collaboration with the British label, after a first CD of chamber music by Bloch and Janáček.
The idea for the recording started from Midori ‘Bach Project’ in the 2012/13 season, when the violinist celebrated 30 years from her professional debut at the age of 11 with the New York Philharmonic. During that season, Midori performed Bach’s solo works extensively in Japan, Germany and North America, also playing the whole works in two acclaimed performances at the Edinburgh International Festival. In August 2014, she performed the whole cycle again in two concerts at Lucerne Festival, where she was Artist Etoile.
On Bach’s works, Midori explains in her own liner notes for the CD:
"I find that I have learned more from studying these Bach compositions than from any other music. It is an almost miraculous feeling that envelops me when I am fully engaged with these musical masterworks. This demands of a player to continually maximize and extend one’s potential in order to respond and commune in creative interaction with the pieces."
Midori performs at classical music summer festivals in the US
Midori’s busy summer schedule continues with appearances at two of the USA’s major music summer festivals. On 26 July 2015 she performs with the Russian National Orchestra at the closing concert of Festival del Sole Napa Valley, California, celebrating the festival’s tenth anniversary. Midori plays Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in an all-Russian programme under the baton of conductor Constantine Orbelian.
Midori performs the same repertoire with New York Philharmonic and Alan Gilbert on the 29 July, making her debut at Bravo! Vail Festival, the orchestra’s summer residence in the Colorado Rockies. The programme also includes Mahler’s Symphony No.5 in the second half.
Midori performs US recitals as part of Partners in Performance, and at Purchase College
During February, Midori visits the two selected organisations for Partners in Performance recitals in the 2014/15 season.
Midori and pianist Özgür Aydin perform at Juneau Jazz and Classics Music Festival in Alaska on 10 February, and Corrales Cultural Arts Council in New Mexico on 12 February. The Juneau concert is the first PiP concert given outside of the 48 continental United States, further expanding the reach of the programme, while in Corrales both musicians will lead master classes with local students. The concerts will feature a programme of music by Bach, Beethoven, Strauss and Fauré.
The programme, founded by Midori in 2003 in response to arts funding cuts in the US, is aimed to stimulate local interest in recitals and chamber music, especially in smaller communities away from the major urban centres. Two promoters are selected each season among the organisations which have applied, and the proceeds from the concerts must be used to promote further local classical music education and events. The concerts are also a chance for the audience to meet the musicians “up close”, with Q&A sessions, master classes and receptions.
Midori and Aydin will then play at Purchase College Performing Arts Center on 14 February, performing Beethoven Sonata for Piano and Violin No.3 in E-flat major, Fauré Violin Sonata No.1, Op.13, Mozart Sonata No.21 in E minor, K.304, and Strauss Violin Sonata in E-flat major, Op.18.
Midori receives APAP 2015 Award of merit for Achievement in Performing Arts
Midori is this year’s winner of the prestigious APAP Award of Merit for Achievement in Performing Arts, which is given each year by the Association of Performing Arts Presenters. The prize is awarded “to an individual whose genius, energy and excellence have defined or redefined an art form for today's audiences”, and it includes composer Philip Glass, singer Jessye Norman, and the Kronos Quartet among its most recent recipients.
In 2014, Midori continued her outstanding work as both a performer and an educator, with concerts all over the world and activities at Partners in Performance, Music Sharing and Orchestra Residencies Programs. Performing highlights of the year include a tour to Japan with Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, a residency at Lucerne Festival as Artiste Etoile in August, and, in the US, the New York premiere of Peter Eotvos’s DoReMi with Alan Gilbert and the NY Philharmonic. Her recording of Hindemith’s Violin Concerto with the NDR Symphony Orchestra and Gustav Eschenbach won a Grammy Award for Best Classical Compendium.
Midori will receive the prize at the 58th Annual APAP Awards Ceremony in New York, as part of APAP NYC 2015, which gathers presenters from North America and more than 30 countries worldwide.
Midori performs Schumann’s Violin Concerto with National Symphony Orchestra
Midori makes a return to the National Symphony Orchestra at the end of October, with two performances at the Kennedy Center on 30 October and 1 November, and one last concert on 2 November at the Ferguson Center in Newport News, Virginia.
Under the baton of the NSO Music Director Christoph Eschenbach, she will perform Schumann’s Violin Concerto, in a programme which also includes Mendelssohn’s Symphony No.5 and Mozart’s ‘Jupiter’ Symphony.
Midori: Artist Étoile at 2014 Lucerne Festival
Midori is at the heart of the 61st summer edition of the Lucerne Festival as the festival’s Artiste Étoile, with a busy schedule of performances, talks and outreach activities. The concerts, featuring both concerto and solo violin works, will showcase her confidence in a wide range of repertoire. At the same time, she will complement her visit with community work in local prisons and hospitals.
On 22 and 23 August Midori performs Bach’s complete Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin at the Franziskaner Kirche. Her performance of the same programme at the 2013 Edinburgh International Festival was described by the Herald as “a triumph of content over style”, which also praised her ability to “let Bach speak”.
Midori’s orchestral appearances at the festival include both a Romantic masterpiece and a world premiere. On the 25 August she performs alongside Mahler Chamber Orchestra and conductor Daniele Gatti, playing Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto. She ends her residence performing the world premiere of Oskar (Towards a Brighter Hue II), a new piece by the festival’s Composer-in-Residence Johannes Maria Staud with the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra and conductor James Gaffigan on the 27 August.
The New York Times reviewed Midori's performance at the Lucerne Festival, writing of her performance of Bach's Partitas that she "played it for all it was worth, with fire and intensity".
Click here to read the New York Times' coverage of the Lucerne Festival.
Midori: residency at Ravinia Festival & Chicago Symphony Orchestra performance
In July, Midori will take up residency at the Ravinia Festival in Illinois, the oldest outdoor music festival in the United States, where she takes part in performances and teaching activities.
Starting on 7 July, Miroi holds a week of master classes with the students of Steans Music Institute as part of the institute’s summer courses. During her time at Steans, she also performs on 9 July in a chamber music recital in the Ravinia Pavilion, alongside fellow master class tutors Miriam Fried (violin), Paul Biss and Kim Kashkashian (viola), Timothy Eddy and Laurence Lesser (cello), and Alon Goldstein (piano). The programme of the recital will feature Mozart’s String Quintet No.1 in B-flat Major, K.174, Schnittke’s String Trio and Brahms’s Piano Quartet No.3 in C Minor, Op.60.
Midori ends her two-week residency in Ravinia with a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto with Chicago Symphony Orchestra and conductor Susanna Mälkki on the 16 July, also at Ravinia Pavilion.
Midori: GRAMMY win for Hindemith recording with NDR Symphony Orchestra and Eschenbach
Midori’s recording of Hindemith’s works with the NDR Symphony Orchestra and conductor Christoph Eschenbach has won the GRAMMY Award 2014 for Best Classical Compendium at the 56th annual ceremony on 26 January.
Midori features as a soloist in the rarely-performed Violin Concerto, recorded live at Hamburg Laeiszhalle in 2012 and published by Finnish label Ondine in August 2013. The album also includes the works Symphonic Metamorphosis and Konzertmusik.
Speaking about the award, Midori commented: "I am delighted that Christoph Eschenbach and the NDR Symphony Orchestra invited me to play Hindemith's Violin Concerto as part of their CD tribute to Paul Hindemith and am very happy that tonight this recording won the GRAMMY for Best Classical Compendium. Hindemith is one of the musicians I respect and admire the most. I hope our recording brings more awareness and appreciation of this great artist."