Arie Vardi, winner of the 2017 Israel Prize, has received international acclaim as one of Israel’s foremost pianists. After winning the Chopin Competition in Israel, he appeared with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Zubin Mehta, and upon winning the George Enescu International Competition in Bucharest, he played numerous concerts throughout Europe. Mr. Vardi studied piano in Basel with Paul Baumgartner and studied composition with Pierre Boulez and Karlheinz Stockhausen. He has performed widely as soloist with major orchestras under the baton of Semyon Bychkov, Sergiu Commissiona, Lukas Foss, Kurt Masur, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Zubin Mehta, Paul Paray, Paul Sacher, Gustavo Dudamel, and David Zinman, among others. Vardi performs regularly as soloist-conductor, playing the complete set of concertos by Bach and Mozart, part of which he has played on the fortepiano.
In recent years, he has specialized in the literature of the Impressionist period, including the entire repertoire of Debussy and Ravel. In addition to his concert career, Arie Vardi is a professor of piano at the Hochschule für Musik in Hanover and at the Rubin Academy of Music and Tel Aviv University, where he served as director and chaired the piano faculty. In 2004, Mr. Vardi was the recipient of the Minister of Education Award for lifetime achievement.