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Simon Mulligan

 Music Director

Simon Mulligan was appointed Music Director at Temple Emanu-El in 2018, where he plays organ and keyboard as well as directs and accompanies the 17-voice professional Emanu-El Choir. He also assists with liturgical planning and many of the administrative functions of the Temple music program.

As a chamber musician, Simon collaborates with many notable artists. Simon was just nineteen when he began worldwide tours with cellist Lynn Harrell. He soon began recital tours with violinist Joshua Bell, performing at every major international venue as well as a live broadcast for Lincoln Center and the Grammy Awards. Simon has performed for President Barack Obama, Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family, and has collaborated with Dame Shirley Bassey, Branford Marsalis, Liza Minnelli, Van Morrison, and Sting. Following his début with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Simon performed and recorded with the BBC Symphony, Detroit Symphony (under Slatkin), English Symphony Orchestra (Boughton), Warsaw Sinfonia (Menuhin), Hong Kong Philharmonic (Atherton), Malaysian Philharmonic, the Royal National Scottish Orchestra (Serebrier), and more.

Alongside an extensive solo repertoire and almost sixty concertos, Simon’s focus on contemporary music has led to first performances of works by Hans Werner Henze, James MacMillan, Paul Moravec, Tobias Picker, Mark Anthony Turnage and Alexis Weissenberg. Simon’s passion for improvisation has been featured in numerous publications including Downbeat, JazzTimes, International Pianist, and Gramophone. He is also soloist on Michael Kamen’s album The New Moon in the Old Moon’s Arms (for Decca), with the BBC Symphony conducted by Leonard Slatkin. He collaborated with Kamen and is featured on the soundtrack to the HBO television series Band of Brothers, produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks. As a jazz pianist, he gives concerts with his London quartet and New York trio.

Simon made his first compact disc under the direction of Yehudi Menuhin, which led to a seven-year collaboration and friendship, culminating in what was to be Lord Menuhin's final concert in Düsseldorf. Since then, recording highlights include Piano for Sony Classical, featuring his own arrangements, compositions, and adaptations for piano and orchestra. Simon has also made compact discs for Universal, Decca, Nimbus and Naxos. His recording The Piano Music of Alexis Weissenberg for Nimbus, includes spontaneous improvisations recorded in the presence of the composer.

Simon holds a degree from St Paul’s School in London, where he studied with Alexander Kelly, Jacques Rouvier, Alfred Brendel, and Alexis Weissenberg. Simon is one of the youngest recipients to be awarded the prestigious Fellowship of the Royal Academy of Music. He additionally counts among his mentors Charles Rosen and Murray Perahia.
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