Press Room

Itzhak Perlman

Legendary Violinist Itzhak Perlman Performs with the Houston Symphony as Both Conductor and Soloist

HOUSTON (Oct. 8, 2018) – Back by popular demand, violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman returns to the Houston Symphony for Perlman Plays & Conducts, featuring works by Bach, Mozart and Schumann, 8 p.m. Oct. 18 and 20, and 2:30 p.m. Oct. 21 at Jones Hall.

Perlman, the world-renowned, Grammy award-winning violinist, brings his trademark virtuosity and heartfelt music-making to Bach’s exquisite Violin Concerto in A Minor, then steps out of the soloist spotlight to conduct the orchestra in Mozart’s intensely emotional Symphony No. 40. One of the last three symphonies composed by Mozart, his Symphony No. 40 stands out as the composer explored stronger, darker emotions than he had in his other works.

The evening concludes with Perlman conducting the Houston Symphony in Robert Schumann’s Fourth Symphony. Inspired by Romanticism in literature, this most innovative and influential of Schumann’s symphonies is one that great conductors long to take on and is the perfect finale to the concert experience of Perlman as soloist and conductor.

Perlman Plays & Conducts, sponsored by Margaret Alkek Williams and Frost Bank, takes place at Jones Hall for the Performing Arts, 615 Louisiana Street, in Houston’s Theater District. For tickets and information, please call (713) 224-7575 or visit Tickets may also be purchased at the Houston Symphony Patron Services Center in Jones Hall (Monday–Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.). All programs and artists are subject to change.

Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018, at 8 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018, at 8 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018, at 2:30 p.m.
Itzhak Perlman, conductor and violin
Bach: Violin Concerto in A Minor
Mozart: Symphony No. 40
Schumann: Symphony No. 4

About Itzhak Perlman
Undeniably the reigning virtuoso of the violin, Itzhak Perlman enjoys superstar status rarely afforded a classical musician. Beloved for his charm and humanity as well as his talent, he is treasured by audiences throughout the world who respond not only to his remarkable artistry, but also to his irrepressible joy for making music.

Having performed with every major orchestra and at concert halls around the globe, Itzhak was granted a Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, by President Obama in 2015; a Kennedy Center Honor in 2003; a National Medal of Arts by President Clinton in 2000; and a Medal of Liberty by President Reagan in 1986. Perlman has been honored with 16 Grammy Awards®, four Emmy Awards, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and a Genesis Prize.

His 2018-19 season features several key collaborations and appearances. As a conductor, he leads the Houston Symphony and Juilliard Orchestra in programs that include works by Bach, Mozart, Schumann, Dvořák and Elgar. He performs the Mendelssohn Concerto with Gustavo Dudamel at the Hollywood Bowl and makes season-opening gala appearances with the San Francisco Symphony and Michael Tilson Thomas and with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and Krzysztof Urbański. Other orchestral appearances include the Seattle, Vancouver and Colorado symphony orchestras. On the recital front, Itzhak performs duo concerts for the first time with the celebrated pianist Evgeny Kissin in Boston, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and New York. Throughout the season, he makes appearances with his longtime collaborator, Rohan De Silva, in recitals across North America.

Further to his engagements as violinist and conductor, he is increasingly making more appearances as a speaker. Next month, he joins Alan Alda for a conversation on the stage of New York’s 92nd Street Y.

A recent award-winning documentary, Itzhak, premiered last year as the opening film of the 25th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival. It was released theatrically in more than 100 cinemas nationwide in March 2018, with international releases following. Directed by filmmaker Alison Chernick, the enchanting documentary details the virtuoso’s own struggles as a polio survivor and Jewish émigré and is a reminder why art is vital to life. Visit

Itzhak Perlman’s recordings have garnered 16 Grammy Awards® and regularly appear on the best-seller charts. In 2008, he was honored with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award for excellence in the recording arts.

About the Houston Symphony
During the 2018-19 season, the Houston Symphony celebrates its fifth season with Music Director Andrés Orozco- Estrada and continues its second century as one of America’s leading orchestras with a full complement of concert, community, education, touring and recording activities. The Houston Symphony, one of the oldest performing arts organizations in Texas, held its inaugural performance at The Majestic Theater in downtown Houston June 21, 1913. Today, with an annual operating budget of $33.9 million, the full-time ensemble of 88 professional musicians presents nearly 170 concerts annually, making it the largest performing arts organization in Houston. Additionally, musicians of the orchestra and the Symphony’s four Community-Embedded Musicians offer over 900 community-based performances each year, reaching thousands of people in Greater Houston.

The Grammy Award-winning Houston Symphony has recorded under various prestigious labels, including Naxos, Koch International Classics, Telarc, RCA Red Seal, Virgin Classics and, most recently, Dutch recording label PENTATONE. In 2017, the Houston Symphony was awarded an ECHO Klassik award for the live recording of Alban Berg’s Wozzeck under the direction of former Music Director Hans Graf. The orchestra earned its first Grammy nomination and Grammy Award at the 60th annual ceremony for the same recording in the Best Opera Recording category.

Eric Skelly: (713) 337-8560,
Mireya Reyna: (713) 337-8557,


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