Hailed by the press for his “bold, rich sound” (Strad Magazine) and “nuanced musicianship,” (New York Times) Israeli Cellist Michael Katz has appeared as a soloist and chamber musician in venues such as Weill Recital Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Kennedy Center, the Van Wezel Performing Arts Center, Tokyo’s Oji Hall, Eindhoven’s Philips Hall, and Jerusalem’s Henry Crown Auditorium. He has performed at music festivals such as Ravinia, Music@Menlo, Yellow Barn, Sarasota, Orford, Kfar Bloom and others and has collaborated with conductors such as James DePriest, David Stern and Menachem Nebenhaus. His musicianship has been recognized with many awards, among them all three awards at the 2011 Aviv Competition, first prizes at the 2010 Juilliard School’s Concerto Competition, and the 2005 Turjeman Competition, as well as scholarships from the America Israel Cultural Foundation and the Ronen Foundation
As the cellist of the Lysander Piano Trio, Mr. Katz was a winner of the 2012 Concert Artists Guild Competition, and was awarded first prizes at the 2011 Coleman Competition and 2011 J.C. Arriaga Competition. He has collaborated and performed with artists such as Itzhak Perlman, Midori, Laurence Lesser, Donald Weilerstein, David Finckel, Anthony Marwood, Peter Frankl, Charles Neidich, Roger Tapping, Violaine Melancon, Paul Biss, and Yehudi Wyner. He has participated in chamber music programs such as the Steans Institue for Young Artists and the Perlman Music Program.
Deeply committed to community outreach and education, Mr. Katz is currently a Fellow in Ensemble ACJW, a program of Carnegie Hall and the Juilliard School which trains the next generation of performers to be artists and teachers that hold a deep commitment to the communities in which they live and work. He was previously selected to be part of a special string quartet led by Midori to play outreach concerts in Myanmar and Japan as part of the 2013-2014 International Community Engagement Program.
Mr. Katz has a great passion for expanding the cello repertoire with both lesser known and contemporary works. He has premiered works by Yehudi Wyner, Malcolm Payton, Sergio Natra, Ofer Ben-Amots, Mohammed Fairouz, Jakub Ciupinski, Eric Moe, Huang Ruo, and others.
Born in Tel-Aviv Israel, Mr. Katz began his cello studies at age 7. Among his teachers in Israel were Zvi Plesser, Hillel Zori and the late Mikhail Khomitzer. Mr. Katz received his Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory where he studied with Laurence Lesser and his Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School where he studied with Joel Krosnick. He is currently pursuing a Doctor of Music degree at SUNY Stony Brook as a student of Colin Carr.