An Israeli Tickling the Ivories

The Fellowship  |  December 16, 2020

Pianist Pnina Salzman
Israelis You Should Know: Pnina Salzman

Born to a Jewish family in Tel Aviv, then part of British-mandate Palestine, Pnina Salzman showed an early gift for playing the piano, giving her first recital at the age of eight. At only ten years of age, the young pianist went to study in Paris, where she won the Premier Prix de Piano at age 16.

The famed violinist Bronislaw Huberman introduced Pnina to the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, which he founded, and the pianist had a lifelong association with the orchestra.

In 1963, Pnina became the first Israeli musician to play in the Soviet Union, and in 1994 she traveled to China as the first Israeli to play there.

Aside from her career as a famed musical performer, she served as professor and head of the piano department at Tel Aviv University, where she taught pianists such as Dror Elimelech, Nimrod David Pfeffer, Elisha Abas, Iddo Bar-Shai, and Yossi Reshef.

Pnina Salzmas passed away in 2006 – the same year in which she won the Israel Prize for music – in her lifelong hometown of Tel Aviv. May her memory be a blessing. Enjoy this pianist and Israeli You Should Know and her interpretation above of Chopin’s Nocturne in C Minor.

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