Photo Credit: Gil Gilbert
The violinist Midori made her historic debut at the age of 11 when she was introduced as a surprise guest artist by conductor Zubin Mehta at the New York Philharmonic's annual New Year's Eve concert in 1982. Since that night over 25 years ago, she has established a record of achievement which sets her apart as a master musician, an innovator, and a champion of the developmental potential of children. In 1992 Midori founded Midori & Friends, a non-profit organization in New York, which brings music education programmes to thousands of underprivileged children each year. Two other organizations, Music Sharing (based in Japan), and Partners in Performance (based in the US), also bring music into the lives of people who may not otherwise have involvement with the arts. Her commitment to community collaboration and outreach extends beyond these foundations to her work with young violinists in master classes all over the world, to her University Residencies Programme, to her Orchestra Residencies Programme, and her positions as Jascha Heifetz Chair, co-director of the Midori Center for Community Engagement, and Chair of the Strings Department at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music. Designated as a United Nations Messenger of Peace by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in September 2007, Midori will help to advance the United Nations Millennium Development Goals and help focus world attention on the needs of youth. Through music education, she will continue to inspire young people to build a sense of community and learn from each other.
Message of Solidarity with the people of Japan
Midori joined Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and a number of other United Nations Messengers of Peace and Goodwill Ambassadors in recording video messages of solidarity with the people of Japan in the wake of the 11 March earthquake and tsunami. The messages were played to affected populations via national Japanese broadcast partners, online partners, UNICs and the UN's social media channels.