Yehudi Menuhin

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About Yehudi Menuhin

Violinist/violist/conductor Yehudi Menuhin’s insatiable curiosity and enthusiasm for all things musical kept his interpretations brimming with vitality right up to the end of his long career. Born in New York City in 1916, Menuhin’s early prodigy appearances playing virtuoso repertoire with astonishing ease created a sensation. When still little more than a child, Menuhin was already playing with the soulful intensity of an established master. Yet everything was pure instinct—in later life, when he began to think earnestly about how he achieved his miracles, his playing could occasionally lose its former sheen. Musically, though, he had moved onto an elevated level, performing with a richness and sheer humanity that was both unique and cherishable. He also began indulging in a range of bracing new musical experiences and initiatives, including setting up a groundbreaking music school at Stoke d’Abernon in Surrey, UK; playing jazz duets with French violinist Stéphane Grappelli and jamming ragas with Indian sitar player Ravi Shankar; and conducting the Berlin Philharmonic with his (shod) feet from an upended yoga position. Menuhin died in Berlin in 1999, aged 82, leaving a vast recorded repertoire, including peerless accounts of neglected concertos by Bloch, Delius, and Nielsen.

New York, NY, United States
April 22, 1916

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