After three attempts and at least as many years, it is a thrill to finally bring to Portland Grammy nominated mandolinist Avi Avital. We are doubly fortunate to have with us his equally stellar collaborator Bridget Kibbey, credited as the “Yo-Yo Ma of the harp.” We are grateful you’ve chosen to spend your evening with Ovations, experiencing the amazing artistry that awaits us.
Avi is an incredibly special artist. One whose creativity and profound musicianship crosses from classical to jazz, from folk to global traditions, from revered recitalist to featured soloist with the great orchestras of the world, and from baroque to new music. From hallowed halls to hipster venues, Avi has made a name for himself as someone who defies categorization. His capacity and skill is limitless.
While it’s not uncommon for one who inhabits so many spaces to skate along the surface, this is not the case with Avi. Each project, each program, each collaboration – he approaches with integrity and depth. His performances are soulful and rich, dynamic and contemplative. He is quite simply a force of nature.
Avi has been compared to Andres Segovia for his championship of his instrument and to the great Jascha Heifitz (whom Ovations presented during its 1953–54 season) for his incredible virtuosity. The first mandolin soloist to be nominated for a classical Grammy, Avi is credited as a driving force behind the reinvigoration of the mandolin repertory. And it is rare to get up close and personal with the harp, and a harpist as stunning as Bridget.
Presenting artists like Avi and Bridget to our audiences brings us great joy. We feel blessed they are both here with us tonight to share their gifts.
Aimée M. Petrin
Executive & Artistic Director