A Powerful Book

Title: Daniel Kossov: Pictures of an Outstanding Musician

Author: Rosemary Ellen Tingley

ISBN: 9780646480636

Publisher: Advanced Press


Each string of a violin has its own special voice and sound that it wants the world to hear as the violinist plays each note with his bow. Close your eyes and listen to the music as it flows not only from the instrument but also from the emotional connection it has with the musician and the piece being played. Daniel Kossov is more than just a conductor and violinist. Becoming as the author relates a Concertmaster of the Jerusalem Youth Orchestra of the JAMD at age 10, he conducted and lead the string sections. Daniel performed as a soloist with orchestras in Israel and countries abroad. But, there is much more to this amazing young artist. At the age of 17 he entered the Curtis Institute of Music winning the Concertmaster audition. Imagine studying theory and analysis with Edward Aldwell. But out author met him when her daughter was given a special opportunity to play the cello at Anna Sleptsovas’ wedding. The excitement, the practice and the anticipation were great and meeting him would create a friendship that would cross many countries. Listening to him play before writing this review and watching him conduct you can see the emotional pull of the music within him and the sound of the violin creating its own special story as you watch him play. The author and her family loved going to the WASO concerts one which they really loved was Alice in Wonderland. Daniel Kossov took on the most technically difficult music with as she states, “with breathtaking ease and simplicity.” As I listened to him play and watched him conduct you become so enveloped in the music, the sounds and his world you forget everything else.

Daniel is complex and definitely has his own way of thinking and reacting to everyone. As we hear not only the author’s voice and her interactions with him but her daughter’s too we get to know many sides of Daniel. Living with the barest of conveniences, totally devoted to his music Jennifer learns that to be his friend or more requires following his rules. Performances that take the listener away with unforgettable moments that will bring tears to your eyes, Daniel Kossov’s brief entrance into the music world would create an impact no one would ever forget. Sitting in the concertmaster’s chair looked natural to Daniel and each time played the halls were filled and the spectators mesmerized.

There is so much more as the author shares some poems that express the many facets of a musician as she writes The Celebration, The Artist and Like A Cat. In each poem you can feel the music within, the feelings she has about Daniel, his music and how he views the world. Read Contentment to get to know him what things are not stressful and life seems calm and read The Artist as she describes how she feels watching him play from the balcony of a theater. Daniel Kossov took on young students would work hard and understand the high standards that he required and set. Discipline is vital when working with him. But, tragedy ensues when the author’s brother dies and things become more difficult as she is not there to say goodbye. The author shares their good times together, their arguments and her strong feelings for this outstanding man. Flashing back to when he was 9 and the reaction of the conductor and director at the National Music Camp allowing him to take over as concertmaster. So talent, such genius that no one knew what to do with him, often how to react so his mother took him to Holon to play for the most renowned teacher Ilona Feher. But, although she was in awe of him and realized his genius she did not accept him as a student. Ilona Feher was well into her 80’s and the dismay and sadness in her heart was nothing compared to Danny’s. But, his contract was terminated in Perth and no one really understood or knew why. Although the author went ahead and created a petition hoping to change the minds of those at the WASO they could not budge. From his special relationship with a Japanese girl named Akiko, to an American named Karen, this musician and genius touched the lives and hearts of so many. Asked about his music he states that within this music you hear the Truth. Strongly believing in education and allowing students to have numerous and varied experiences would endear him to them and win them over.  International competitions that he won, at present sharing his musical talents between the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra where is the Concertmaster and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra where he also serves in the same capacity the Voice of his violin is heard and the talent of this great man fills the many concert halls he honors. Imagine hearing him play the Kreutzer Sonata. Imagine the difficulty of the piece and the way he executed it without any problem. Can you hear the applause? This is truly a story that everyone needs to read and I am glad that I had the honor of reviewing this book.




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