Virtuoso concert pianists Yaron Kohlberg of Israel and Bishara Haroni of Palestine make up the two halves of Duo Amal. Their name “Amal” means “Hope” in Arabic, reflecting their belief that music can overcome different backgrounds and cultural boundaries. The Sydney Morning Herald noted that “the virtuoso pianists bear testament to the capacity of music to transcend conflicts that have proved intractable”.
Check out the full 8th Annual International Music Festival lineup at: mbaw.org/imf
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Originated in the conflicted Middle East, Duo Amal was formed by international pianists Yaron Kohlberg and Bishara Haroni. The duo’s name, Amal, means hope in Arabic and reflects their belief that music can overcome different backgrounds and cultural boundaries. The Sydney Morning Herald noted that “the virtuoso pianists known as Duo Amal bear testament to the capacity of music to transcend conflicts that have proved intractable”. World-famous conductor Zubin Mehta wrote: “Haroni and Kohlberg are two excellent pianists.. This duo is not only a sign of friendship between their peoples but a music collaboration to enjoy”.
Following their first joint performance at a peace concert in the Oslo Opera House in 2008, they have played numerous concerts in such renowned concert halls as the Metropolitan Museum in New York, Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, Beijing concert hall, Asahi Hall in Tokyo, Melbourne recital center, Sala São Paulo in Brazil, Gran Teatro Nacional in Bogota, Theatre de la Monnaie in Brussels and the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach. They have also performed at the United Nations headquarters in Geneva and have been invited to the Vatican for a concert for the Pope as part of the global education day, which has since been postponed due to COVID 19. The duo combines two-piano solo performances with orchestra and recitals in traditional concert halls with educational outreach and workshops in order to promote their vision.
Yaron and Bishara are also active in the world of music as presenters and soloists. Mr. Kohlberg is the president of Piano Cleveland, the presenter of the world-renowned Cleveland international piano competition, in which he won the silver medal in 2007 performing in the finals with the Cleveland orchestra. He has won over 10 international piano competition prizes and performed in venues such as the Kremlin in Moscow, Carnegie Hall in New York, the Kennedy Center in Washington DC and the Forbidden City concert hall in Beijing. He speaks six languages including Mandarin Chinese. His vision of expanding audiences through accessible programming and supporting musicians has resulted in Piano Cleveland’s online piano competition ‘virtualoso’ which supported artists during the COVID 19 pandemic and ‘the listening series’ — all reaching thousands of viewers worldwide.
Mr. Haroni is the founder and director of ‘Bestival’, an international festival which brings together performances of Arab, Jewish and traditional classical music. He recently launched the Be Major foundation which supports young musicians in the Middle East. As soloist Bishara has performed with major orchestras such as the London Philharmonic, the Valencia Symphony Orchestra and the Israel Philharmonic and collaborated with conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Lorin Maazel and Zubin Mehta. He performed in various chamber music concerts at locations such as the Berlin Philharmonie, the Royal Albert Hall in London and the Salzburg Mozarteum. He completed his studies at the Hanover School of Music and Dance.