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HindustanTimes Mon,20 Oct 2014

World-renowned violinist to collaborate with mentor

Aarefa Johari , Hindustan Times  Mumbai, September 03, 2013
First Published: 08:31 IST(3/9/2013) | Last Updated: 08:37 IST(3/9/2013)

Conductor Zubin Mehta won't be the only star on stage when Munich's Bavarian State Orchestra performs at the National Centre for the Performing Arts next week.

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On September 10, Japanese American solo violinist Midori will perform in the city — and the country — for the first time, playing Beethoven’s violin concerto in D major, in a concert organised by the Mehli Mehta Music Foundation (MMMF).

Midori is known around the world not just for her mastery of the violin but also for her contribution to education.

“Music is for everyone. The thought that there are young people out there who will never have the opportunity to see the wonderful emotional rewards that it offers, is tragic,” said Midori, 42, in an email interview with Hindustan Times.

Since 1992, Midori, who goes by only one name, has founded four non-profit organisations, in the US and in Japan, dedicated to bringing music education to school children, youth orchestras and underprivileged youngsters.

“I believe every student should have access to a musical education,” said Midori, who was selected as a United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2007.

Born in Japan, she made her debut as a soloist at the age of 11 with the New York Philharmonic orchestra, conducted by Zubin Mehta.

At 14, she made headlines after a legendary performance in Massachusetts: during her solo, she broke the E-string of her violin, instantly borrowed an instrument from an orchestra member, only to break another E-string and borrow another violin.

She finished the concert without missing a beat.

She is now looking forward to visiting India and teaming up with Mehta again.

“Zubin Mehta gave me an opportunity, more than 30 years ago, which became the beginning of my performing career,” said Midori, who has waived her concert fees for the Mumbai performance.


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