Virtuoso - Bio
#Maestro2RockStar Gad Lev, the conductor and violinist, plays his unique orchestrated covers of all-time Pop and Rock hits.
He seeks to make quality music accessible to all and everywhere, also taking it places where you would never expect – he was the first musician to play while skydiving (reaching 204 Km/h), playing while immersed in the sea, while skiing, and even on a 5G-force roller coaster – these combine his love for extremes and music.
As an orchestral conductor, he worked with orchestras such as the Berliner Symphoniker, Berlin Sinfonietta (Germany), the Buchmann-Mehta Symphony Orchestra, La Nua Orchestra, and Symphonette Ra’anana (Israel).
As a violinist, he was concertmaster and soloist with the greatest classical musicians of our time – Barenboim, Dohnanyi, Masur, Ma, Mehta, Perlman, Vengerov, Zuckerman (to name a few), and appeared in the Royal Albert Hall (London), Carnegie Hall (New York), Musikverein (Vienna), Tonhalle (Zurich), Philharmonie (Berlin and Paris) and other renowned venues around the world.
He is the recipient of many awards, two of which are master luthier violins of the 17th and 18th centuries, and has also been dedicated numerous musical masterpieces.
He lives with his wife and children in Amsterdam.
"The Rock Star that even your mum has a crush on"
Virtuoso - Interview
When did you start to get interested in music?
When I was seven I was presented with two options: either play the piano or the violin. I said that the violin looked more like magic, and the rest is history…
Which is the part you enjoy the most about music?
That ‘mojo’ moment of playing music with friends when you get goosebumps all over…
Most artists say that through their art they learn more about themselves, heal injuries… In which aspects has music helped you?
Playing music, as opposed to only listening to it, is a real full-brain workout. In those periods I don’t play for a long time, I most definitely feel my mental skills decline. In addition, playing can easily bring you back to other bookmarked times. It’s transformative and meditative.
What does music mean to you?
Through music one can learn physics, geography, history, aesthetics, and discover the path to one’s own feelings. Music is the whole world compressed, or perhaps the essence of it all.
Who are your idols?
I don’t really have idols. Idolatry is a negative thing in my perspective. I would also never want to exchange my life for another’s as that would come with many hidden shortcomings they would rather not display to the masses. I rather just respect the myriad past and present humans for their genius. If we can focus on these instead, gosh, that’s going to be a long list 😉 I‘ll just jot down a few that come to mind – to all my other respected muses, please forgive me in advance! Bono, Freddy Mercury, David Bowie, Daniel Barenboim, Zubin Mehta, Maxim Vengerov, Yitzhak Perlman, Leonidas Kavakos, and numerous artists that have passed away such as Mozart, Brahms, Mahler, da Vinci, Bernini and Dali, Einstein (did you know that both he and Max Plank were also violinists?), Hawking, Penrose and Brian May (yes, the physicist-guitarist!).
If you didn’t like music, what would you like to do?
Who doesn’t like music?!
Do you consider that nowadays there are more or fewer opportunities for new artists? Why?
I am of the opinion that good art is created in a similar ratio per a given population throughout history. After the rise of the internet, it wasn’t long until social media platforms (in which users can showcase themselves or their works on ‘pedestals’) became available to all. As a result, one must now search harder for good quality content. That turns out to be both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, some deserving artists could get their break more easily, but on the other, they may be obscured by a lot of ‘background’ noise. Say Vincent van Gogh was alive today and had a social media account. Would he be successful? Would a ‘piano-playing’ cat with a billion YouTube viewers have had a similar success two centuries ago?
What would your idyllic life as an artist be like?
As a teenager, I used to believe that good art necessarily demanded the artist to ‘suffer’ for its cause (both emotionally and financially) and to maintain a constant miserable state. Back then, I would refrain from using ‘idyllic’ to denote anything achievable in this life. Having matured, I understand that creating from a place of inner bliss and fulfilled love is no less powerful and is equally admirable. I know I am an extremely lucky person and am thankful for every single one of my countless blessings. Therefore ‘idyllic’ is no extraneous term in my life, and it is used also for things I have obtained or yet to obtain.
I find more and more beauty in the small things in life. I am therefore already living a version of what an idyllic life means to me.
Virtuoso - Projects
Do you want to know more about Virtuoso? You can find some projects below.