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Michael Tsalka



Keyboard performer Michael Tsalka is appreciated by audiences worldwide for his special affinity for Bach, Mozart, Schubert and Mendelssohn. A versatile musician, Tsalka performs recitals on the piano, harpsichord, fortepiano, clavichord and positive organ. Tsalka is also at home performing chamber music.  

Dr. Tsalka has won many international prizes and awards including the Pestalozzi Award in Frankfurt am Main and the Rotary Grant in Bonn, Germany. In 1998, he received the second prize at the Nicolai Rubinstein International Competition in Paris. In 2000, he won first prize at both the Genoa International Competition and the A.M.A Calabria Competition. The following year, he received first prize at the Nouro International Competition in Sardinia. Tsalka was also a scholar of the Richard Wagner Verband in Bayreuth and of the Italian Government in Rome (1998, 1999). In 2003, he was selected to be artist-in-residence at the Lions Palace in Berlin.

In 2004, he received the Temple University Fellowship and the Jacobs Music Steinway Award. In 2006, he was invited to be an artist-in-residence at the Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies and received a grant from the Dean of the Esther Boyer College of Music. In 2007, he received the prestigious Presser Foundation Music Award and the Temple University Fellowship, as well as a grant from the Dean of the Boyer College of Music. This year he has been invited to be artist-in-residence at the Ragdale Foundation in Chicago, the Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Minneapolis, and the Lions Palace in Berlin, Germany.

Tsalka has made multiple appearances throughout Europe, with recent performances in Rome, Milan, Stockholm, Berlin, Florence, Parma, and Bruges. In 2002, he toured Latin America stopping in Guatemala, Cuba, Colombia and Argentina. Israeli, German, and Italian composers have written and dedicated pieces to him which he has performed in world premieres.

Recent piano recitals include the Myra Hess Concert Series in Chicago, Washington’s Theater, Media’s Steinway Concert Series, Mozart’s A. Festival in Austin, Rutgers University, the Blumental Center for the Performing Arts in Tel-Aviv, Teatro Corale in Parma, Tempietto Concert Series in Rome, Italy, Bellas Artes Theater in Mexico City, Western Ontario University in Canada, Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, Sala Baldini in Rome, the Lions Palace in Berlin, as well as recitals throughout Argentina (Buenos Aires, Parana, Salta, Tucuman, Cordoba), and the National University of Mexico.

Fortepiano, harpsichord, organ, and clavichord recitals include the Hong Kong Academy of Music, the Schubert Club in St. Paul, Notre Dame University in Indiana, the University of North Texas, Stetson University in Florida, Rome College in Georgia, Cape Cod Concert Series, Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, Bar Ilan University in Tel-Aviv, Biblioteca Lerdo de Tejada in Mexico City, the University of Western Ontario in Canada, Magnano International Symposium in Italy, the Early Music Cycle in Buenos Aires, the National University of Mexico, the Nydahl collection in Stockholm, and Edinburgh University in Scotland.

Four-hands and two-piano performances include Albacete’s Piano Festival in Spain, the Nydhall Collection in Stockholm, Gressony Music Festival in Italy, Villa Torlonia in Rome, Katrineholm’s Chorale in Sweden, the Trinity Concert Series in New York, Osaka’s Music Festival in Japan, performing with the Guatemala Symphony Orchestra in Guatemala City, the Myra Hess Concert Series in Chicago, Wesleyan College in Rochester, NY, in San Asis Concert Series in La Habana, Cuba, the Music Academy in Stockholm, and the Julita Music Festival in Sweden.

Recent chamber music concerts in Philadelphia include several performances of modern and contemporary music with Tuba, Violin, Flute, Voice, Guitar, and Percussion at Temple University, the Philadelphia Art Museum, the Strings for Schools Concert Series, the Latin American Guild Concert Series, and the Flute Society.

Lecture-Recitals were given at Trier’s Music Festival in Germany, Temple University in Philadelphia, Iowa University, the Hong Kong Academy of Music, Rutgers University (for the Musicological Society), Salem College in NC, and the Magnano International Symposium in Italy. In November 2008 Tsalka is invited as a keynote speaker in a conference at the Tainan National University of Arts, Taiwan.

A committed educator, Mr. Tsalka has taught master-classes at the National University of Tucuman, Argentina (2001), the Lyceum in Florence (2002), the Academy of Fine Arts in Tirana, Albania (2002), Haverford College, Pennsylvania, (2004, 2005), the University of Western Ontario, Canada (2005), the Settlement School of Music, Pennsylvania (2003, 2004, 2005), and the National University of México (2006). In 2007, he has been invited to teach at the Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Arts in Minneapolis and at the Cycle for Early Music in Buenos Aires. In 2008, he taught at the Hong Kong Academy of Music, and is scheduled to give master-classes at the National University of Mexico. From 2002 to 2007, he taught in Temple University’s keyboard department.

Dr. Tsalka was born in Israel and graduated from the Rubin Academy of Music (Tel-Aviv University) with a Bachelor’s degree in Piano Performance. Following studies in Germany and Italy, he received a Piano Solo Diploma at the Scuola Superiore Internazionale del Trio di Trieste in 2001 where he studied with Dario di Rosa. He has participated in master classes with Malcolm Bilson, Charles Rosen, Pamela Franck, Menachem Pressler, Edward Aldwell, Anner Bylsma, Paul Trein, and Klaus Schilde. He later graduated from Temple University, Philadelphia, with a Masters degree in Chamber Music/Accompanying, a Masters degree in Harpsichord, and a Doctorate in piano performance. From 2002-2008 he studied fortepiano and chamber music with Lambert Orkis, piano with Harvey Wedeen, and harpsichord, clavichord and positive organ with Joyce Lindorff.

Dr. Tsalka’s doctoral thesis was dedicated to the unknown keyboard sonatas of Daniel Gottlob Türk. Two of his articles on this subject will be published in 2008 by De Clavicordio VIII in Italy, and the Early Keyboard Journal in the U.S.A. In the upcoming months, he plans to edit and publish these sonatas and to record them for the first time. His immediate future activities include CD releases presenting Chopin’s Preludes. As well as a recording dedicated to the last keyboard sonatas of W. A. Mozart, J. Haydn, D. G. Türk, and F. Schubert.