Daniel Barenboim

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Daniel Barenboim
Birthday
BirthplaceBuenos Aires, Argentina
Occupation
Pianist and conductor

Barenboim, Daniel

(bâr`ənboim'), 1942–, Israeli pianist and conductor, b. Buenos Aires, Argentina. He made his debut in Buenos Aires at seven. His family settled in Israel in 1952, and he studied at Rome's Santa Cecilia Academy and with Nadia BoulangerBoulanger, Nadia
, 1887–1979, French conductor and musician, b. Paris. Boulanger was considered an outstanding teacher of composition. She studied at the Paris Conservatory, where in 1945 she became professor.
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 and others. By the 1960s he was a soloist with leading orchestras worldwide and was acclaimed as one of the most brilliant and versatile pianists of his generation. He is particularly noted for performances of Mozart and Beethoven.

During the 1960s he began to devote much of his time to conducting, becoming closely associated with the English Chamber Orchestra; since 1972 he has also conducted opera. Barenboim was guest conductor for a number of orchestras before his controversial appointments as director of the Orchestre de Paris (1975–89) and the Bastille Opera (1987–89). In 1991 he succeeded Georg SoltiSolti, Sir Georg
, 1912–97, English conductor, b. Hungary. He made his conducting debut in Budapest (1933) and later led orchestras in Switzerland, Germany, and France. Solti gained fame as music director (1969–91) of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
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 as music director of the Chicago Symphony, ending his tenure there in 2006. In 1992 he became artistic director of the German State Opera, Berlin, and in 1999 he was a founder of the Diwan Orchestra, composed of Israelis and Palestinians and other Arabs. He became principal guest conductor at Milan's La Scala opera house in 2007 and musical director there in 2011.

Barenboim unveiled a new piano of his own design in 2015. Similar to straight-strung pianos of the late 19th cent., it has strings strung straight and parallel, unlike the diagonally strung ones in the standard modern piano, but maintains the touch and power of the latter. The piano produces a sound that has greater warmth and transparency, and finer tonal characteristics, than contemporary instruments.

Bibliography

See his A Life in Music (1991) and Music Quickens Time (2009).