Daniel Cohen (born February 18, 1984) is an Israeli conductor and violinist. He is the music director of the Jersey Chamber Orchestra, the founder and artistic director of the Gropius Ensemble and a Gustavo Dudamel Fellow of the Los Angeles Philharmonic for the 2012-13 season.
Since his conducting debut at the age of 19 Daniel have conducted such orchestras as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Kammerphilharmonie Graz, the Orchestra del Teatro Petruzzelli, the Orchestre National de Montpellier, the Transylvania Philharmonic, and the Orchestra of the Teatro Lirico di Cagliari the European Union Chamber Orchestra, The orchestra of the NorlandsOpern in Sweden, the Lucerne Festival Academy Orchestra and the Orchestra dell’Arena di Verona.
Daniel is an active opera conductor. At the Israeli Opera he conducted such operas as: Tchaikovsky's Pique Dame, Shostakovich's Lady Macbeth of Mzensk, Verdi's La Traviata, Rigoletto and Othello and Berg's Wozzeck. Daniel also conducted the Israeli Opera Studio productions of Rossini's La Cenerentola and Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro.
At the Teatro Lirico di Cagliari Daniel conducted a new production of Massenet's Don Quichotte. At the Festival della Valle d’Itria in Italy he conducted the Italian premiere of Francesco D'avalos's opera Maria di Venosa. In January 2013 Daniel made his debut at the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto, conducting Christopher Alden's production of Mozart's La Clemenza di Tito.
Early life and musical education
Daniel Cohen was born in Natanya, Israel in 1984. He studied music from an early age, beginning on the piano at the age of 6 and switching to the Violin at the age of 7. At the age of 14 he became the youngest student at the Tel-Aviv Academy of music, studying violin under Haim Taub and Composition under Isaac Sadai.
At the age of 19 Daniel received his bachelor's degree (summa cum laude) from the Tel Aviv Academy. During his years at the Academy he was an active violinist and chamber musician, performing as a soloist with various orchestras including the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, the Israel Chamber Orchestra and the Haifa Symphony Orchestra.
In 2004 Daniel competed his Postgraduate in Violin at the Royal Academy of Music in London. The following year Daniel joined the conducting class of the Royal Academy and in In 2007, aged 23, he completed his Conducting Studies there. Among his teachers were George Hurst, Colin Metters and Sir Colin Davis.
Whilst at the Royal Academy, Daniel formed the Eden Sinfonia, a student orchestra with which he performed numerous concerts, including, in 2008, a performance at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London.
West-Eastern Divan Orchestra
Daniel joined the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra in the summer of 2003, aged 19. He was a member of the first violin section for the next 8 years and over 12 tour. Among many other concerts, Daniel participated in the memorable Ramallah concert of 2005.
Between 2008 and 2011 Daniel assisted Daniel Barenboim in the preparation of a Beethoven symphonies cycle as well as major works by Schoenberg and Boulez with the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra. In the summers of 2010-11 Daniel assisted Maestro Barenboim in creating a young version of the Divan Orchestra called the Al Andalus Orchestra which he conducted for two summers.
Lucerne Festival Academy
Daniel served as an assistant conductor to Pierre Boulez and the musicians of the Ensemble Intercontemporain at the Lucerne Festival Academy from 2009 to 2013. During His time at the Lucerne Festival Academy he also assisted such conductors as Péter Eötvös, Susanna Mälkki, Pablo Heras-Casado, and David Robertson.
From 2011 to 2013 Daniel also took part in the Lucerne Festival Academy Composer Project in which Pierre Boulez oversaw the commission, creation, composition, rehearsal and performance of two new compositions: the first by Christian Mason (conducted by Gergely Madaras) and the second, Sawti'l zaman by Benjamin Attahir was conducted by Daniel Cohen at the KKL in Lucerne in September 2013.
Awards and Prizes
Daniel won the America-Israel Cultural Foundation scholarship consecutively from 1995 to 2007. As a violinist Daniel received the 2004 DipRAM award for outstanding final recital (violin) from the Royal Academy of Music, London
As a conductor Daniel won the first prize at the Admont International Conducting Competition, Austria (2007), The first prize at the Aviv Competition in Israel, the Yuri Aharonowich Prize (2008), and the third prize at the Evgeny Svetlanov Conducting Competition, Montpelier, France (2010).