Leading Israeli composer Aviya Kopelman, the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra composer-in-residence since 2013, will teach at University of California Berkeley during the 2019 spring semester, thanks to the Visiting Israeli Artists Program.

Kopelman, who grew up on classical music, is well-versed in a wide variety of musical traditions and composes multi-genre works combining elements of jazz, rock, and electronics. Born in Moscow and raised in Jerusalem, she has set music to many Jewish texts, from Biblical verses to modern Jewish and Israeli poetry. Her works, which appeal to audiences of classical and contemporary music, also draw inspiration from Israeli politics and feminist themes.

In 2007, Kopelman was among the youngest-ever recipients of the Israeli Prime Minister’s Prize for Musical Composition. She was also awarded in the “Kronos: Under 30 Project.” She has performed numerous times at Carnegie Hall, as a composer and pianist, and while training with the Kronos Quartet. “The Israel Institute is thrilled to have one of Israel’s leading composers-in-residence with us this year. Aviya is a ground-breaking artist of distinction, a woman who has reached unparalleled achievement in her field, and a generous teacher,” says Flo Low, Associate Director, Arts Programs, the Visiting Israeli Artists Program.

As part of her residency, Kopelman was jointly commissioned by the Israel Institute and the San Francisco Girls’ Chorus for a new work that will premiere later this year. “Her music is inspired and accessible, and we are excited for students and audiences in the Bay Area to experience a new work created by Aviya in their community,” Low added.

The Visiting Israeli Artists Program, an initiative of the Israel Institute, brings Israeli artists from various disciplines – including film, music, choreography, and the visual arts – to North America for residencies. Originally launched as a standalone initiative in 2008 and integrated into the Israel Institute in 2013, the program fosters high levels of interaction between Israeli artists-in-residence and the local communities in which they are based through classes, lectures, exhibitions, screenings, readings, and performances.

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