An exclusive interview with the virtuoso cellist at the Tikotin Museum of Japanese Art – Jan. 3, 2023

Thank you Dr Les Glassman for documenting this interview with Kristina Reiko Cooper at the Tikotin Museum. I’d be grossly exaggerating to say that I know anything about the classical music world today, as you can see from my face. Nonetheless, this interview was both a fascinating education in how the rarified world of contemporary classical music works, and how Kristina, from her home in Tel Aviv, holds it all together as an Orthodox Jewish wife–aka woman of valor, working Mom, globe-trotting orchestra solo cellist, and university professor. At the start of the pandemic, when her worldwide performance schedule came to a grinding halt, a Chiune Sugihara coin become the seed for a new symphony to honor Israel’s only Japanese man to receive Yad Vashem’s highest honor, as Righteous Among the Nations. Here’s the story behind this exquisite manifestation of a Symphony for Sugihara.

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