Aviya Kopelman

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Aviya Kopelman (born in Moscow in 1978) is an Israeli composer and pianist.

She is one of the youngest ever Israel Prime Minister Prize for Composition recipients and serves since 2013 as composer-in-residence of the Jerusalem Sympnony Orchestra.


Kopelman's musical education started with piano lessons and she is listed as a "notable alumna of Israel Arts and Science Academy", where she studied with prof. Andre Hajdu, prof. Bat-Sheva Rubinstein and prof. Michael Wolpe. She holds degrees in composition from Jerusalem Music and Dance Academy, Bar-Ilan University (MA Summa Cum Laude, PhD in progress). She was a lecturer in Hed College of Music in 2003–2007 and a senior lecturer, as well as academic advisor and master-classes curator in Rimon School of Music in 2006–2014. She gives lectures and courses in major academic institutions in Israel, including Jerusalem Music and Dance Academy, Buchmann-Mehta School of Tel Aviv University, Haifa University, Levinsky College, Musrara College, Bar-Ilan University Music Department, Van Leer Institute, and more.

Selected concert works[edit]

Kopelman's concert music includes a commissioned work "Widows & Lovers" for the Kronos Quartet, as forth recipient of the "Kronos: Under 30” project.[1] The piece was widely performed and later workshoped by Kronos after the premiere at the Carnegie Hall,[2][3] by ensembles such as the Ragazze Quartet[4] and young Israeli musicians.

Kopelman's instrumental concert music includes works written for and performed by the Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Competition,[5] Jerusalem Trio, Conjunto Iberico Octet, the Israel Camerata, Israeli Chamber Orchestra, Raanana Symphonette, the Israel Sinfonietta Beer Sheva, Carmel Quartet, the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, Waterloo Soloists, Gavriel Lipkind, Noam Buchman, Eyal Shiloach, and many more.

Her vocal concert music is set primarily to Hebrew and Russian poetry, often combining different languages in one piece. Early example includes the song cycle "Songs of Love and Distress" for voice and piano/string quartet, combining Akhmatova's, Wollach's and Kopelman's texts in poly-stylistic and painful piece, while later writing is less European concert-music oriented, and includes electronics, drums and electric bass, besides voice, piano and trombone – such is "Grief Measure", commissioned by the Carnegie Hall for Professional Training Workshop with Dawn Upshaw.[6]

Another large work is the Hebrew Magnificat for SATB choir and orchestra, originally performed in 2005 by the Tel-Aviv Chamber Choir, and later edited and re-orchestrated for sympnonic orchestra (2017, JSO). The piece, 37 minutes long, is set to Latin, German and Hebrew texts and shows various aspects of maternity.

Symphonic pieces include "May They Rest in Piece" (2002) and "Between Gaza and Berlin" (2014), both dealing with the complex political situation in Israel. The title of the last deterred both the IPO (according to Zubin Mehta) and the Israeli Opera from performing it in Israel.

Kopelman has a flute concerto (2017) and a concerto for oud, violin and string orchestra.

Non-concert music[edit]

Except for concert music, Kopelman is a songwriter, an album of which will be released in 2018. She uses contemporary rock and pop melodies, harmonies and arrangements, and also cooperates with non-classical musicians such as Yair Dalal and Sameer Makhoul on oud, the Rock-Blues singer Ruth Dolores Weiss, the experimental guitarist Yonatan Albalak, and more. She wrote and recorded for the fusion ensemble Turquoise Project (brass and rhythm section), as well as experimental music for violin and Max/MSP.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Kronos: Under 30 Project". kronosquartet.org. Retrieved 20 January 2018.
  2. ^ Schweitzer, Vivien (25 February 2008). "Kronos Quartet – Music – Review". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 20 January 2018.
  3. ^ "Carnegie Hall Commissions – About the Composer: Aviya Kopelman". archive.li. 2 May 2013. Archived from the original on 2 May 2013. Retrieved 20 January 2018.
  4. ^ RagazzeQuartet (5 July 2010), Ragazze Quartet New York, rehearsal Black Widow by Aviya Kopelman, retrieved 20 January 2018
  5. ^ Arthur Rubinstein (6 November 2012), David Fung – Stage I (Scarlatti, Rachmaninov, Kopelman & Ravel), retrieved 20 January 2018
  6. ^ Smith, Steve (18 April 2011). "Dawn Upshaw and Students at Zankel Hall – Review". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 20 January 2018.