Yehudi Menuhin the solidarity musician

Yehudi Menuhin was born in New York on April 22, 1916 into a family of Russian Jewish origin, and died in Berlin on March 12, 1999. From an early age he showed a special talent for the violin, he began to study it at the same time. age four with Sigmund Anker, his first teacher. He made his debut at age seven with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra in Lalo’s Spanish Symphony.

In these first years of life, Menuhin began to elaborate his unique musical and artistic conception. It was with George Enescu, his teacher in the old continent, when he discovered that “interpreting was equivalent to being”, as he would later reflect in his diary.

“I vividly remember my first lesson with Enescu. My mother took me to her house and we waited in the living room, shortly after the teacher appeared with his violin and began to play a sheet music by Johann Sebastian Bach. That is where my love for the violin really began. “, a musical instrument that he would abandon at the end of his life to dedicate himself, with the same passion, to conducting orchestra.

Over the years he would develop and mature his most characteristic criteria and values, among which the capacity for work, self-demand, as well as a conception of art closely interrelated with life stand out..

He liked to accompany and make known all the music as a universal value. His fascination for different cultures will lead him to play with both Ravi Shankar and his Gypsy friends, thus highlighting the search for beauty and sharing it with others.

Su carrera artística, desarrollada a lo largo de siete décadas, es una de las más espectaculares de nuestro tiempo. Como violinista primero, y posteriormente como director de orquesta, protagonizó, junto a los mejores solistas y formaciones orquestales, importantes convocatorias en los principales escenarios internacionales. Aliando la técnica irreprochable con una comprensión extraordinaria de la música, trabajó un repertorio muy amplio: de los clásicos Bach, Ravel y Beethoven a la música de vanguardia, de la música barroca a las improvisaciones de jazz con Stéphane Grappelli.

Menuhin se preocupó, durante toda su vida, por las grandes cuestiones del siglo XX, tanto en lo relativo a la educación como a la defensa de los derechos de las minorías, en numerosas manifestaciones públicas defendió la tolerancia y cooperación entre diferentes pueblos y culturas y nunca dejó de librar batallas por la música, la paz y la convivencia entre los hombres; ante todo, fue un humanista comprometido con la defensa de los derechos humanos. En 1945 intervino en el concierto de inauguración de la ONU, volvió a actuar en Alemania, preconizando la superación de las graves secuelas de la Segunda Guerra Mundial.

"There can be no authentic artthat conforms to hunger, racism, bombs and torture."

His career as a musician and public recognition, Doctor Honoris Causa by more than 30 Universities in the world, including the University of Córdoba, served him to undertake, without respite, the defense of the weakest, which earned him numerous distinctions, among them : Nerhu Peace Prize in 1968, World Peace Prize in 1979, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in 1992 and Prince of Asturias Prize for Concord in 1997, Lord Yehudi Menuhin since 1993.

In 1991 he created the Yehudi Menuhin International Foundation, whose priority tasks are the integration and social, educational and cultural inclusion of disadvantaged boys and girls, from art as a tool for social cohesion, the defense of the rights of cultural minorities, the promotion of coexistence and tolerance and the creation of international cooperation networks in the fields of education and culture. “It is to fight against the injustices that I have seen throughout my life that I create a Foundation that bears my name.” This is your mandate.

More about Yehudi Menuhin: Yehudi Menuhin: witness of the 20th century

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