Live improvisation features prominently in Noam’s solo piano recitals. The improvisations can proceed in numerous paths: be entirely free-flowing and spontaneous, follow a narrative story, relate to visual arts or natural imagery, respond to known tunes or written compositions, interact with the audience, and more. In all instances, the listening experience is of music created and communicated in real-time, a celebration of being in the moment.
In 2012/13 and 2013/14 Noam was the only musician from North America invited to perform and lecture at the all-European ERASMUS Improvisation Intensive Project in The Netherlands, hosted under the auspices of the European Union. In October 2013 his solo piano improvisation was broadcast to a worldwide audience of 16,000 registered users in the first-ever online Music History Course hosted by the Curtis Institute on the internet platform Coursera. Noam has performed Bach’s Goldberg Variations encored by his live improvisation on the piece for a broadcast on Israeli national TV, and has toured with his solo recital series Chopin and Improvisations. His new all-improvisation album Ambiro's Journey will be released in November 2017. He has also presented The Art of Improvisation at the International Keyboard Institute and Festival (IKIF), International Society for Improvised Music (ISIM), Canandaigua LakeMusic Festival, The Juilliard Doctoral Forum, and the Aldwell Center in Jerusalem, among others.
Noam Sivan’s compositions include the opera Fruits of Folia produced by the Mannes Opera & Orchestra, Nocturne for Orchestra performed by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, a String Sextet commissioned by the New York City Ballet’s Choreographic Institute, and The Cabin of Loneliness premiered by Members of the Israel Philharmonic with Thalamus Voices conducted by the composer. The 45-min. oratorio Death and Birth in Hebrew and Arabic was premiered in June 2014 by the Tel-Aviv Soloists Chamber Orchestra with vocal soloists, mixed chorus, and the composer playing the solo piano part. In 2016, Concentrated Stillness was commissioned and premiered by violinist Jennifer Koh at the New-York Philharmonic Biennial Festival. His music has also been performed by Anthony McGill, Charles Neidich, Tanja Becker-Bender, Laurie Rubin, Yael Weiss, Hung-Wei Huang, Noah Getz, Jacqueline Leclair, Steven Dibner, Maya Hartman, Azi Schwartz, Horszowski Trio, Momenta Quartet, Link Ensemble, Moran Vocal Ensemble, Duquesne Contemporary Ensemble, New York Miniaturist Ensemble, Jerusalem Saxophone Quartet, Piano4, and Fourtissimo Piano Quartet, among others. His innovative solo-violin transcription of the Liszt B minor Sonata received admiring responses from noted violinists Ruggiero Ricci, Vadim Repin, and Gidon Kremer, among others. Its world premiere, by Giora Schmidt at the Ravinia Festival, has been viewed online more than 70,000 times. Vera Vaidman’s recording of Noam’s Liszt transcription was chosen as “CD of the Month” in April 2015 by Czech Music Direct. Choreographers who have created dance works to Noam Sivan’s music include Idan Sharabi, Adam Hendrickson, Lucy Van Cleef, and Michelle Mola. His music has been broadcast on over 40 radio stations in the U.S. and abroad, featured in a special composer-portrait concert at the Greenwich Arts House, and recorded for Bridge, Koch, and Romeo Records.
Noam Sivan has premiered his own Piano Concerto in the triple role of soloist, conductor & composer, performed the Asian premiere of the Viktor Ullmann piano concerto with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra in Manila, and has appeared as pianist-conductor in the Mozart concerto repertoire and in Bach’s concerto for four keyboards and orchestra. His solo playing of excerpts from sixty different pieces is featured on the iPhone application Chopin Alarm Clock. He has played chamber music at Barge Music, Weill Recital Hall, 92nd Street Y, and Steinway Hall in New York; Ravinia, Kefar Blum, Summertrios and Waterville Valley festivals; Serenata Series in London, Ontario; DeVos Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan; Pinnacle Series in Scottsdale, Arizona; Stadtinitiative in Vienna, Austria; Forest School Theatre in London, England; Jerusalem Music Center; and other venues.
Noam was a composer-in-residence at the Canandaigua LakeMusic Festival and a guest composer at the University of New Mexico Composers’ Symposium, performing his own music as pianist and conductor, and giving master-classes, workshops and lectures. He has held two week-long residencies at the Aldwell Center for Piano and Musicianship in Jerusalem, teaching piano master-classes and giving improvisation workshops. His master-classes, performances, and lectures, were also hosted by University of Toronto; New York University; University of Michigan; University of California Los Angeles; City University of New York Graduate Center; Music Institute of Chicago; State University of New York at Stony Brook; Fourth and Fifth International Schenker Symposia; Music Theory Society of New York State; International Mannes Institute for Advanced Studies in Music Theory on Schoenberg; Queens College; Hochstein Music School; Young Israel Philharmonic Orchestra; and other programs and venues.
Born in Israel (1978), Noam Sivan currently lives in New York City with his wife Maya and their three children. He holds a doctorate from the Juilliard School, and is on the faculties of Juilliard and of the Curtis Institute, having founded improvisation courses and produced improvisation concerts in both conservatories. He has taught at Mannes College for ten years. His teachers have included Milton Babbitt, Carl Schachter, Edward Aldwell, Robert Cuckson, Richard Goode, Menachem Zur, Vadim Monastirsky, and Manuela Sivan.
Pianist, improviser, composer, conductor, and interdisciplinary artist, Noam Sivan has been featured throughout North America, Europe, and Asia, in venues including Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall, Ravinia Festival, Salle Cortot in Paris, Zipper Hall in Los Angeles, Pickman Hall in Boston, the Royal Conservatories of Brussels and The Hague, Cultural Center of the Philippines, Chicago Cultural Center, Scotia Festival in Canada, Jerusalem Theatre, and Tel Aviv Museum. A notable pioneer in the revival of improvisation in the classical music world, Noam has given full-length improvised piano recitals, conducted orchestral improvisations, and collaborated on multidisciplinary improvisations with musicians, singers, dancers, and actors. Over 50 of his compositions have been performed, including operas, scores for ballet and dance, vocal music, orchestral and chamber works, and evening-long multimedia shows.