"Classical Meets Jazz" is a conversation between two worlds - the concert halls of 17th century Europe and the bustling clubs of Harlem. This high-energy program features two internationally acclaimed pianists, Tal Zilber and Eyran Katsenelenbogen, who speak classical and jazz as their mother tongues. Their virtuosic improvisations have attracted over 1,000,000 views on YouTube and drawn enthusiastic audiences throughout US, Germany, Israel, UK, and China. In this program, Tal and Eyran begin in their respective camps - performing traditional classical and Jazz repertoire - until the two worlds collide: Gershwin’s Summertime gets recast as a four-part fugue and Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker learns how to swing.
Israeli born pianist Tal Zilber enjoys an unusually diverse career of classical, jazz, and pop performances as well as composing, arranging and improvising. His chamber, orchestral and vocal arrangements have been performed by the Carmel String Quartet, the Be’er Sheva Symphony Orchestra, the Worcester Youth Symphony Orchestra and the Boston City Singers choir among others. His piece Four Preludes for Piano and Alto Saxophone was broadcast on Radio Clásica (Spain National Radio). In 2009 he performed his electro acoustic compositions at the Louisiana-Texas electro acoustic music festival (LaTex).
In the classical music scene, Dr. Zilber has appeared as a soloist with the Ramat Hasharon Orchestra in Tel Aviv and with Beth El orchestra in Hartford CT, and his recordings were featured on the Galei Zahal and Kol Hamusica radio stations in Israel. International tours include USA, Australia, Argentina, China, Germany, United Kingdom and Costa Rica.
Prizes and Awards include the Andre Watts Scholarship, the America-Israel culture foundation scholarship, the Lillian H. Duncan Prize and the Marian Fox Martel scholarship.
Dr. Zilber holds a Doctorate degree from the New England Conservatory, an M.M from Rice University, a Performance Diploma from Indiana University, and a B.M. from the Rubin Israeli Academy of Music. Past teachers include Brian Connelly, Edmund Battersby, Michael Boguslavsky, Alexander Volkov, Ran Blake, Bert Seager and Wha Kyung Byun.
Master pianist Eyran Katsenelenbogen has been dedicated to the medium of improvisational piano. "He is a passionate man who feels deeply, and he has the talent to express those feelings through his playing. You can not help but be moved by his performance." - Frank Rubolino, Cadence.
A classically trained pianist with a unique jazz style, Eyran has performed concerts and appeared on radio and television throughout the world. His concert tours included venues such as Saint Joseph Theater, Scarborough; Bechstein Centrum, Hamburg; Tel-Aviv Jazz Festival; Teatro di Marcello, Rome; Mirrors Hall, St. Petersburg; Iridium Jazz Club, New York and Jordan Hall, Boston. In 2012, he is scheduled to perform a concert in the town of Katzenelnbogen in Germany, where his great ancestor was born in the fifteen century.
In 2011, Eyran collaborated with classical pianist Andrei Ivanovitch on the DVDClassical Meets Jazz: Pictures at an Exhibition - a two-piano onstage dialogue weaving together classical and jazz styles in a revolutionary interpretation of Mussorgsky's timeless masterpiece. Eyran and Andrei preformed their innovative program to enthusiastic audiences in Europe, Russia and the United States.
Related to Felix Mendelssohn, Eyran was born in Israel and was first taught by Aida Barenboim, mother and teacher of famed pianist/conductor Daniel Barenboim. Eyran went on to continue his music education at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, where he trained with Ran Blake, Paul Bley, Fred Hersch, Danilo Perez, George Russell and Gunther Schuller.
Since 1996, Eyran has held a faculty position at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School and School of Continuing Education. At NEC, Eyran has pioneered innovative techniques for teaching contemporary music performance to students with special abilities and diverse needs. He collaborated with his students on ten CDs, and created a music library on YouTube documenting their performances.
Eyran continues to thrill and inspire his listeners throughout the world. His recordings have been enthusiastically reviewed by major jazz publications such as Jazziz, Jazz Times, Jazz Journal International and All About Jazz.
"He sets the bar towards which other pianists must strive." - Jay Deshpandae, All About Jazz