Avidom (Mahler-Kalkstein), Menahem

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AVIDOM (Mahler-Kalkstein), MENAHEM

AVIDOM (Mahler-Kalkstein ), MENAHEM (1908–1995), Israeli composer. Avidom, who was born in Stanislav, Poland, immigrated to Palestine in 1925. He went to Paris to study music and was a music teacher in Tel Aviv from 1935 to 1946. From 1945 to 1952 he was general secretary of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and from 1952 to 1955 an adviser on the arts to the Ministry of Tourism. From 1955 to 1980 he was director-general of the Israel Performing Rights Society (acum) and chairman of the Israel Composers' League. As a composer, Avidom, using modern techniques, succeeded in interweaving Oriental musical elements – rhythmic, melodic, and stylistic – with Israeli dance rhythms. His works include ten symphonies; a concerto for flute and strings and a violin concerto; two string quartets, a brass quartet, and Enigma for five wind instruments, percussion, and piano; seven operas, including Alexandra and In Every Generation; and an opera buffa, The Crook. Avidom's more recent works include The Pearl and the Coral, ballet music for ten instruments written for the Inbal Theater (1972); Passacaglia for Piano (1973); Hommage à Rubinstein, six inventions on his name, commissioned for the 1973 International Rubinstein Competition; Yemenite Wedding Suite, for piano (1973), commissioned by Gerick Edition, Germany; an overture (Spring), commissioned by the Jerusalem (Radio) Symphony Orchestra (1973); and The Farewell or Louise, a radiophonic opera (1969). He was awarded an Israel Prize in 1961.


P. Gradenwitz, Music and Musicians in Israel (1959), 83–88; A. Holde, Jews in Music (1959), 319; a.m. Rothmueller, Music of the Jews (1954), 204 and index.

[Herzl Shmueli]

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Avidom (Mahler-Kalkstein), Menahem

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