Egyptian Pianist Mohamed Shams Performs Solo Debut at Carnegie Hall in April

By Jaime Prisco on Feb 19, 2015 08:14 PM EST

Carnegie Hall will be hosting the Egyptian classical pianist Mohamed Shams' solo debut in April. During the program, Shams will perform works by Chopin, Carter, Mendelssohn, Ravel, Scarlatti and Egyptian composer Gamal Abdel Rahim.

Shams is an exceptionally gifted Middle Eastern musician steeped in Western classical music tradition. He recently returned from Cairo, where he performed Beethoven’s 4th piano concerto with the Cairo Symphony Orchestra under Venezuelan conductor and violinist Eddy Marcano. The Cairo Symphony is the oldest and largest orchestra in the Arab Middle East, and Shams has performed with the ensemble since the age of 16.

Shams is aware that many people aren’t knowledgeable on Egypt's long and storied classical music tradition. “I am an Egyptian classical pianist,” he said in a press release. “To many, this may appear anomalous; I suspect that for most of the worldwide audience for this art form, Egyptian classical artists are a well-kept secret. However, Egypt was the first, and remains the most cosmopolitan of the Arab nations in this region.”

Shams studied piano at the Conservatoire of Music, the Academy of the Arts in Cairo, Egypt, graduating with distinction in 2004. In 2003, he was awarded a one-year Fulbright grant to study with Marilyn Neeley in Washington DC.

Shams is the recipient of a number of scholarships, prizes, distinctions, awards and honors. He was awarded the Silver Medal — the highest honor — by the Worshipful Company of Musicians in 2012.
According to Shams, “The beauty of music reaches across boundaries. Despite, or perhaps because of all the turmoil in the Middle East, it is more vital than ever to make music. Music breaks down barriers and builds bridges between nations and people.”

Shams solo debut will be on April 15 at the Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall. Click here for more information or to purchase tickets.

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TagsMohamed Shams, Solo Debut, Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall, Chopin, Carter, Mendelssohn, Ravel, Scarlatti, Gamal Abdel Rahim

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