The past few years have seen a great number of Nimrod Borenstein’s works being commissioned, recorded and premiered at the most prestigious venues and festivals across the globe, from the Royal Festival Hall and the Royal Opera House in London to the Salle Gaveau in Paris, Carnegie Hall in New York and Hong Kong City Hall. His music is performed regularly throughout Europe, Canada, Australia, the Far East, Israel, South America, Russia and the U.S.A.
In recent years, he has been commissioned to write the obligatory performance pieces for the Hong Kong International Piano Competition (2019) and the International Jeunesses Musicales Competition for violoncello (2020).
Leading artists, ensembles and institutions who feature his work include Vladimir Ashkenazy, the Philharmonia Orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Oxford Philharmonic, the Israel Camerata, the Enescu Festival, Ex Cathedra, the Quartetto di Cremona, Roberto Prosseda, Dmitry Sitkovetsky, and many others.
The son of a renowned painter, Nimrod’s first musical experience came as a child on holiday in France, when on a family walk through a forest they came across an outdoors concert. “I just stopped and refused to move until the concert was finished two hours later. And I told my parents then and there that I wanted to learn violin and be a musician.” recalls Borenstein. A love affair with music started, with the young Borenstein challenging himself by listening to classical works on the radio, then turning the sound down halfway through and himself scoring the way he felt the next 30 seconds would continue (he was often more or less correct)!
In 1984 he won the competition of the Cziffra Foundation, and moved to London in 1986, to pursue his studies as a violinist with Itzhak Rashkovsky at the Royal College of Music. He was then awarded the highest scholarship from the Leverhulme Trust to study composition at the Royal Academy of Music (where he is now an Associate).
Every composer needs artists to perform their music. One of the most important for Borenstein has been Vladimir Ashkenazy, who took an interest early on. A first opportunity to work together arose when Ashkenazy conducted the Philharmonia Orchestra for a performance of The Big Bang and Creation of the Universe op. 52 to great acclaim. This was quickly followed by a Philharmonia premiere, again with Ashkenazy, If you will it, it is no dream op. 58 . The collaboration has continued, including in 2017 the release on the Chandos label of a major album conducted by Ashkenazy, entirely devoted to Borenstein’s music. That recording was highly successful and was named BBC Music Magazine 'Choice'.
Borenstein’s music continues to rise in popularity. His ballet score, Suspended, has received more than 200 performances (from the Edinburgh International Festival to the Taipei Arts Festival) since its premiere in January 2015 at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. The score was the launch-recording of the Berlin-based Solaire label.
His music features on many albums including, recently, recordings of his Concerto for Piano, Trumpet and strings (English Symphony Orchestra, Signum), Reminiscences of Childhood (Nadav Hertzka, Skarbo), Cieli d'Italia (Quartetto di Cremona, Avie), Quasi una cadenza and Kaddish for violin solo (Olga Kaler, Centaur), and The Dream (Pascal Rogé, Shiva Collection).
Borenstein is prolific in writing concertos for a wide variety of instruments, recently including his Concerto for violin and orchestra op. 60, Poème op. 64 for violin and string orchestra, Concerto for Alto Saxophone and String Orchestra op. 70, Cello Concerto No. 2 op. 77.
His latest concerto, the Concerto for Piano and Orchestra op. 91, was premiered in 2022. Nimrod conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for a premiere recording of the concerto with Clélia Iruzun as soloist. The Album was released by Somm on January 20th 2023.
Increasingly in demand on the podium, Borenstein has various conducting projects underway, currently encompassing orchestras in the UK, Germany, Italy and Israel.
Nimrod Borenstein substantial catalogue continues to develop and currently numbers more than 90 works, including orchestral and chamber music as well as vocal and solo instrumental pieces.