The Republican: Cellist to ‘jazz’ it up for hungry

May 4, 2010Matt Haimovitz [credit: Stephanie Mackinnon]

Cellist Matt Haimovitz has an innovative approach to music, and he is bringing his talent to Western Massachusetts to benefit two organizations that help the hungry.

Renowned internationally for his performances aimed at popularizing classical music, Haimovitz will perform with his eight-piece cello ensemble Uccello, comprised of his top students from McGill University in Montreal, for a program of new arrangements of jazz classics.
“He is so varied in what he presents” he is sure to have a wide appeal among local audiences, said Debbie S. Rubenstein, director of Rachel’s Table, one of the organizations that will benefit from the concert.

Haimovitz, who teaches cello at McGill and previously taught cello at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, will perform on , May 12, at 7 p.m. at Glenbrook Middle School Auditorium, 110 Cambridge Circle, Longmeadow.

Members of the Glenbrook Orchestra will open the concert.

On May 13, he will perform at 7:30 p.m. at the National Yiddish Book Center on the campus of Hampshire College in Amherst.

Besides Rachel’s Table, an organization that provides food to agencies that serve the hungry and homeless in the Springfield area, the concerts will also benefit the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts.

“In Western Massachusetts in 2009 more than 90,000 individuals were served by organizations that help the hungry and homeless,” Rubenstein said. “Both Rachel’s Table and the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts provide the basic right of all people’s food.”

Haimovitz, who was born in Israel in 1970, made his debut at the age of 13 as soloist with Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic; he counts violinist Itzhak Perlman among his musical mentors.

He first played with the New York Philharmonic at age 16, and by 17 he had a record deal with Deutsche Grammophon.

In 2000, he founded his own record label, Oxingale, which has released CD recordings of his recital programs and music performed by others. He has performed with such orchestras and conductors as the Berlin Philharmonic with Levine, the New York Philharmonic with Mehta, the English Chamber Orchestra with Daniel Barenboim, the Boston Symphony Orchestra with Leonard Slatkin and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra with Kent Nagano.

He made his Carnegie Hall debut when he substituted for his teacher, the legendary Leonard Rose, in Schubert’s String Quintet in C, alongside Isaac Stern, Shlomo Mintz, Pinchas Zukerman and Mstislav Rostropovich.

The Rose Album

The Rose Album

According to his Web site,, the “solo cello recital” is one of his trademarks, both inside and outside the concert hall.

Tickets for both of his concerts are $18 for general admission; $54 for admission, reception, reserved seating; $75 for admission, reception and preferred seating; $5 for students. The reception begins an hour before each show.

Tickets can be purchased at the Rachel’s Table office, 1160 Dickinson St., Springfield, or by calling (413) 733-0084. They can also be purchased by e-mailing development@foodbank or by calling (413) 247-9738

By Cori Urban

View article at The Republican

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