At just 17 years of age, this Nazareth-born pianist was discovered by Zubin Mehta, and his young talent was given a chance to shine with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. At 22, he made his debut at Carnegie Hall in New York, where he established himself as one of the most important contemporary pianists. Saleem Ashkar is a frequent guest of the world’s greatest orchestras and festival stages, performing with conductors such as Barenboim, Mehta, Chailly and Eschenbach and with orchestras including the Vienna Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony and Filarmonica della Scala.
A dedicated recitalist and chamber musician, Saleem’s current focus is a complete Beethoven Sonata Cycle presented by the Konzerthaus, Berlin which spans the 2016/17 season. Saleem will perform the cycle in parallel in Prague and Osnabrück and his home country of Israel.
Highlights of the current and future seasons include performances with Bamberg Symphoniker and Eschenbach, Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg and Znaider, a tour to Australia to include the Adelaide Symphony and a third consecutive re-invitation to the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. He will also travel to Canada and the US for a re-invitation to the National Arts Centre Ottawa with Alexander Shelley, an appearance at Cal Performances, San Francisco and a residency at Brown University.
He has been recording for Decca since 2013. Saleem is an ambassador of the Music Fund (www.musicfund.eu), which supports the development of musicians and music schools in conflict zones and developing countries.