Letter of Commendation from MK Limor Livnat (2010)

MK Limor Livnat

Greetings from the Minister of Culture and Sport of the State of Israel
Limor Livnat, MK
to the 3rd International Israeli Music Competition
and the 2nd Ernest Bloch Music Competition
London, England, 2010

It is my happy privilege to congratulate the initiators, sponsors, competitors and audience taking part, this third year in England, in the 3rd international Israeli Music Competition and the 2nd international Ernest Bloch Music Competition, named after the Swiss-born, American-Jewish composer, Ernest Bloch (27.4.1880-15.7.1959).

 

The tiny state of Israel, still struggling for a secure existence, social image and character, has never relinquished its rich cultural life and original creativity, even during the most difficult of times.  Today, Israel is the inexhaustible source of an energetic, rich cultural momentum in all the arts, including music, where its achievements meet the highest standards. Indeed, music is one of the pillars upon which our cultural undertakings rest. It is a source of spiritual nourishment and, in turn, we nurture it and invest our finest resources in it – both human and financial.

During the 61 years of Israel's statehood, our music has made an enormous leap, developing out of all recognition. Its history and the world-class quality of its achievements is a miraculous story, realized against all odds. Our superb orchestras, performers and composers, and their sheer numbers in proportion to our population, have no equal anywhere in the world. In recent generations, Israel has even "exported" some musical giants – performers and conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman, Shlomo Mintz and Daniel Oren.

This year, during each stage of the competitions held in various venues in London, more than 30 works by Israeli composers have been played by 140 competitors from 45 countries. For the first time, musicians from India, South Korea, Mexico and Australia have competed. All this is a dream come true for our State, its people and its musical culture.

The contribution of this unique enterprise to Israeli classical music is invaluable. The competitions present to the UK and Europe Israel’s wonderful accomplishments, giving them broad exposure and the hallmark of quality, enabling British audiences to sample the abundant variety of original Israeli musical creations, which combine East and West, and draw hearts and minds near.

Music is the language of the angels, alleviating sadness and giving wings to the soul and the imagination. But chiefly – music succeeds where words fail.  In these hard times for Israel's international image, our national security imposes on us many diplomatic hardships. There are no better ambassadors to present the beauties of Israel and its creations than our gifted composers and performers. We are very proud of them and grateful for their efforts.

Our special congratulations to the world renowned pianist, Dame Fanny Waterman, DBE, a patron of this year's competitions, and to Lilian Hochhauser, their President and Guest of Honour.

Shalom and good luck!

MK Limor Livnat

Minister of Culture and Sport

 
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