Sep 16, 2013
Daniel Barenboim is one of the best known musicians of our time. Born in Buenos Aires in 1942, the pianist and conductor has been performing on the great stages of the world since the age of ten. London, Paris, Chicago, Bayreuth, and Milan are just a few of the cities where he has been enthusiastically acclaimed. Since 1992, Barenboim has been the music director of the Berlin State Opera (Staatsoper Unter den Linden) in his adopted hometown of Berlin.
Many of his musical recordings have won awards. In addition, he is the recipient of numerous prestigious honors, including the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Grand Merit Cross with Star and Sash.
Barenboim is the author of several books and has given a series of talks and lectures at, among others, Columbia University in New York and as the Charles Eliot Norton Professor at Harvard University. He was awarded an honorary doctorate from Oxford University.
In addition to his own performing, Barenboim is very involved in fostering young talent. Based on his initiative, a nursery school with special emphasis on music was set up in Berlin in 2005. He is particularly committed to dialogue in the Middle East. Convinced that art can overcome barriers, he worked with the Palestinian literary scholar Edward Said to set up the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra. Since 1999, it has drawn young musicians from Israel, Palestine, and the Arab countries together. Dialogue and listening to each other is promoted by playing music together. The orchestra’s annual international concert tours encounter extremely receptive audiences.
Barenboim is a United Nations Messenger of Peace. He is committed to music education in the Palestinian territories, where he initiated the construction of conservatories of music as well as a nursery school with a strong emphasis on music.
Barenboim’s latest project is the Barenboim-Said Academy, which is scheduled to start operating in 2015 in Berlin. Young people from Israel and the Arab countries will be given scholarships to pursue their music education.