My name is Alon, I play different sorts of plucked instruments like mandolins and lutes of several sizes and forms.
How did I find my particular path? or perhaps, how did it find me?
I was born and raised in the city of Beersheba, at the southern part of Israel. When I was 8 years old, my good parents looked for an afternoon activity for me, and after trying all sorts of gym oriented classes (which were totally not for me!) I was asked which musical instrument would I like to play? Being the youngest in a family of five siblings, all teenagers of the 1990s, rock & pop music was something quite regular in the house. My answer was therefore crystal clear: Electric Guitar!
However, at the local conservatory they thought I was too young and offered me the mandolin instead. "It's just like a guitar" they said, "besides, you'd love it, we have a brilliant orchestra!". Which turned out to be totally true, the Beersheba Mandolin Orchestra is to whom I definitely owe my basic musical education and a huge amount of fun too!
The years went by and my time has come to join the rows of the IDF for the compulsory service of three years. It was at that point where I received a special recognition from the Ministry of Education which allowed me to combine academic studies and musical career development throughout my military service.
In the mind provoking place called the Jerusalem Academy of Music, including a dance faculty and departments for both Western and Eastern music, I moved on studying orchestra conducting as well, and with a generous scholarship from the Erasmus Mundus project, I soon found myself in the lute class of the Royal Conservatory of Brussels. The time in Jerusalem and Brussels was extremely important for me, I've won several international prizes and competitions, and met some of the most influential people in my life.
Among the Israeli foundations which supported me along my way, I am especially grateful to the America-Israel Cultural Foundation, Zefunot Culture (Secrets of Culture), the Chais Family Foundation and the Edna Sarny Foundation.
Discovering Europe was (and still is) an amazing experience. I was lucky to have been invited to join Daniel Barenboim's West-Eastern Divan for some extensive touring and I've stayed closely associated with this fantastic project several years after. Since I've moved my base to Germany and graduated another Master program at the Hanover University for Music, Theater and Media (hmtmh), while being active in further social-musical projects as Live Music Now (Yehudi Menuhin) and Rhapsody in School (Lars Vogt). For a while I was also following the historical harp at the early music department of the Hochschule für Künste (HfK) in Bremen.
I try to live in artistic balance between my solo career as an instrumentalist, conducting engagements, activity as a continuo player in different baroque formations, my interest in music education and my passion for world music of different sorts, especially in dialog with the different cultures and religions.
Although I sometimes carry my instruments on my back, they are actually the ones going before me, leading me to fascinating places and mesmerizing moments. I like to see my instruments as wings which allow me to fly, this is how I came up with one of the hashtags that I use: #pluckerswings
(At some point I've noticed that it leads mostly to a certain American diner offering chicken wings, which was for me - as an activist for animal rights - a total nightmare. One more reason to stick to it though, I think!)
For the more usual biography, please click here.