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Yehuda Gilad

Professor of Clarinet, Colburn School of Music and University of Southern California Thornton School of Music

A teacher, instrumentalist and conductor, Yehuda Gilad strives for “total musicianship,” and as a result, he has won the acclaim of both critics and audiences alike. A founding faculty member of the Colburn School Conservatory of Music and Professor of Clarinet at the USC Thornton School of Music, Mr. Gilad has developed one of the most sought-after clarinet studios in the world. His students have achieved top honors in every premier international clarinet competition, and graduates of his studio hold positions in over 100 major orchestras worldwide, including the Cincinnati and Minnesota Orchestras, the New York, Los Angeles, Stockholm, Sweden, Hong Kong, China and Seoul Philharmonics, San Francisco Opera, the Concertgebauw, and the Orquesta Nacional de España, to name a few. Most recently, he served as president of the jury for the Carl Nielsen 5th International Clarinet Competition in Odense, Denmark. Mr. Gilad is a recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Distinguished Teacher Award from the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars and USC’s highest honor for excellence in teaching, and is regularly invited to present master classes and performances at music festivals and nearly every major conservatory around the globe. An accomplished clarinetist, Mr. Gilad has performed at top music festivals worldwide, including the Marlboro Music Festival, the Bowdoin International Music Festival, the Crusell Music Festival, the San Francisco Chamber Music Festival, and Santa Barbara’s Music Academy of the West. He also founded the Yoav Chamber Ensemble, which performed extensively throughout the U.S. and recorded for the Orion label, and the Colburn Woodwind Chamber Players, which toured Germany and China. Mr. Gilad has collaborated as performer and conductor with many of today’s most prominent artists including Gil Shaham, John Perry, Sara Chang, Joseph Kalichstein, Vladimir Feltsman, David Jolley, Joshua Bell, Jimmy Linn, and many others. Mr. Gilad’s success as a conductor equals that of his renown as a teacher and performer. Since its inception in 2003, Yehuda Gilad has served as Music Director and Conductor of the Colburn Orchestra and has been instrumental in the ensemble’s development from a small string orchestra to a full symphony orchestra. Maestro Gilad’s additional music directorships have included the Malibu Strawberry Creek Music Festival, the 20th Century Unlimited concert series in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the Thornton Chamber Orchestra, the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra and the Colonial Symphony of New Jersey—The Star-Ledger: “Gilad transformed the Colonial Symphony into one of [New Jersey’s] artistic trendsetters.” Under his leadership, the Colonial Symphony became the only orchestra in the area to receive an NEA grant for seven consecutive years, and in 1995 and 1996, the orchestra received the Distinguished Arts Organization Award from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts for its artistry and programming merits. Mr. Gilad received acclaim from The New York Times for his “strong imaginative programming” and championing of American and contemporary music. Also an active guest conductor, his appearances have garnered critical acclaim in many countries on three continents. In 1987 he became the first Israeli-born conductor to perform in China and has since conducted numerous engagements in Beijing and Shanghai. Dedicated to fostering increased public appreciation and support of classical music in the United States and abroad, Mr. Gilad has appeared on various broadcasts including NBC, CBS, WQXR, WMTR, KUSC, NJN, Cablevision, and the national television of mainland China. Since 2012, the Colburn Orchestra concerts have been recorded in HD and broadcast on Southern California’s independent television station KCET, in their new arts series Open Call. Mr. Gilad also led the Colburn Orchestra in recordings for Live Classics and Yarlung Records, collaborating with composer Menachem Wiesenberg as well as cellist Ron Leonard and mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke.Born and raised on a kibbutz in Israel, Gilad began his musical education at the age of 16. Following his conservatory studies, he emigrated to the United States in 1975 to further his education. His former teachers include Giora Feidman, Mitchell Lurie, and Dr. Herbert Zipper. Additionally, he was an active participant in numerous intensive master classes with the late Sergiu Celibidache and Leonard Bernstein.

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