The Grammy® Award-winning Orpheus Chamber Orchestra has invigorated international audiences and critics alike with its superior artistry, energy, and distinctive approach to music-making. Orpheus is committed to illuminating both classic orchestral repertoire and new works by contemporary composers. Over its history, Orpheus has built a legacy through its acclaimed recordings, performances, and collaborations with the world’s most dynamic and esteemed soloists. In addition to extensive national and international touring, the orchestra presents an annual concert series at Carnegie Hall and appears regularly at major New York venues. A self-governing organization, Orpheus was founded in 1972 by cellist Julian Fifer and a group of fellow musicians, who aspired to perform diverse orchestral repertoire using chamber music techniques. Today, Orpheus continues this philosophy, performing without a conductor and rotating musical leadership roles.
Anoushka Shankar, sitar
Hailed by Billboard as “exceptional,” and by BBC Music Magazine as “important a pioneer as her father,” Anoushka Shankar first sat down with a sitar, custom-made to accommodate a child's hands, when she was only eight. By age 13, she’d made her recording debut, performing on the album In Celebration — a tribute to the works of her father, Ravi Shankar. The two have been crowned by Newsday as “The Sitar King and Princess.” Anoushka conducted her father’s Chants of India album, which was produced by close family friend, and former Beatle, George Harrison. In 2002, at Mr. Harrison’s posthumous tribute “Concert for George,” in London, Ms. Shankar conducted a new composition by her father, Arpan, which featured a guitar solo by Eric Clapton. Ms. Shankar, also a film actress, earned a Best Supporting Actress nomination from India’s National Film Awards in 2004, for her debut in Dance Like a Man—a film by the Dehli-based director Pamela Brooks. 2005 brought a return to the recording studio and the release of her fourth and most ambitious album, Rise (Angel Records). Rise marked a breakthrough for Anoushka, who composed, produced and arranged the album. It received glowing reviews throughout the world and gave Anoushka another Grammy nomination in 2006 for Best Contemporary World Music. When Anoushka performed a piece from the CD at the pre-telecast Grammy ceremony that year, she became the first Indian to play at the Grammy Awards. In March 2008, Ms. Shankar graced the cover of India’s premiere issue of Rolling Stone Magazine.
Ravi Shankar, composer
Ravi Shankar, legendary sitarist and composer, is India's most esteemed musical Ambassador and a singular phenomenon in the classical music worlds of East and West. As a performer, composer, teacher and writer, he has done more for Indian music than any other musician. He is well known for his pioneering work in bringing Indian music to the West. Always ahead of his time, Ravi Shankar has written three concertos for sitar and orchestra, violin-sitar compositions for Yehudi Menuhin and himself, music for flute virtuoso Jean Pierre Rampal, and has collaborated with Phillip Glass (Passages). George Harrison produced and participated in two record albums, "Shankar Family & Friends" and "Festival of India" composed by Ravi Shankar. He has composed extensively for films and Ballets in India, Canada, Europe and the United States. Shankar is an honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and is a member of the United Nations International Rostrum of composers.
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