Pinchas, Itzhak & friends: Classical Greats share NAC Gala stage with rising stars

Amanda Forsyth, Jethro Marks, Pinchas Zukerman, Jessica Linnebach © J. Henry Fair

Violinist Jessica Linnebach met Pinchas Zukerman in 1999, at the first ever National Arts Centre Summer Music Institute (SMI), the young artist training program Zukerman founded after becoming the NAC Orchestra’s Music Director. She was 15.

Despite her young age, Linnebach was already a poised and experienced musician. See her perform at the National Arts Centre at the tender age of 7.

The meeting with Pinchas Zukerman at the SMI put her on a rocket ship to success. Linnebach impressed the maestro with her talent and went on to study with him at the Manhattan School of Music. She returned to the SMI in 2000 and 2001 as a mentor before he brought her to Ottawa for good to play with the NAC Orchestra. In 2010, Linnebach was named Associate Concertmaster of the NAC Orchestra. During her young career, Linnebach has distinguished herself among the next generation of Canadian classical artists being lauded on concert stages nationally and around the world.

Linnebach says that what Pinchas Zukerman does through his teachings and NAC music education programs like the SMI, is teach young musicians the fundamentals: tone production, discipline and just making the instruments sound good. 

“He always says ‘play with a beautiful sound, play in tune,’” explains Linnebach. “Those are just basic things but, oh, so important.” 

On October 2, 2014, Linnebach, and two other SMI alumni – Jethro Marks and Daniel Khalikovwill join Zukerman, the legendary Itzhak Perlman, and other outstanding musicians on the NAC’s Southam Hall stage to perform repertoire by Mendelssohn and Bach as part of the 2014 NAC Gala, presented by CIBC, in support of the National Youth and Education Trust.

Since his SMI days more than a decade ago, violinist Daniel Khalikov’s career has also taken off. He has performed all over the world as a soloist, chamber musician and concertmaster. He is now a member of the MET Orchestra, one of the finest opera orchestras in the world. For his part, Jethro Marks, Principal viola of the NAC Orchestra, has performed as soloist and chamber musician throughout the United States, China, Mexico, Europe, and Canada.

Pinchas, Itzhak & friends will demonstrate and celebrate the power of quality young artist training as they play “with a beautiful sound.”

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