Ory Shihor delighted the audience at the Burnight Center with sonatas from Beethoven

Rocio Valdez, A&E Editor

Bosendorfer and Yamaha artist, Ory Shihor, performed at Cerritos College in the Burnight Center Theatre on Feb. 8 to celebrate Beethoven’s 250th birth-year.

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The audience was mesmerized with Shihor’s swift hands on the keyboard as he played some of Beethoven’s sonatas: “Pathetique,” “Moonlight,” “Tempest” and “Appassionata.”

Shihor has an extensive career of over 30 years as a professional pianist and wanted to share the love and energy of Beethoven through his powerful music.

Ory Shihor, Israeli-American, is an award-winning pianist and is also the founder of the Ory Shihor Institute, which offers training and certification programs for piano teachers and students.

The institute also includes the Piano Talent Performance Academy (PTPA), a pre-college program that provides training for highly gifted young pianists with a focus on audition preparation at top US music conservatories.

He opened the concert by playing sonata “Pathetique” and ended with “Moonlight” before there was a 10-minute intermission.

The last two sonatas he played were “Tempest” and “Appassionata.”

As the concert came to an end, the audience gave Shihor a standing ovation as he bowed to thank the audience.

After the concert was over, he expressed he was feeling tired but nonetheless very happy with his performance and it a great experience to play at Cerritos College.

Shihor has a passion for playing the piano because for him “it is an escape and it is freedom to express myself.”

He developed an interest in being a pianist due to “the fact that you can play harmony and so much, it is more than just a melody, it is a very easy instrument to start, it is hard when you get to play it later but at the beginning it is very accessible.”

Derrick Smith, from the city of Compton, is a vocal student himself and his favorite sonata played by Shihor was, “Pathetique.”

“I thought he was amazing, he played with a lot of passion and it was very well done,” Smith said.

Ernesto Lara Cruz, business administration major, attended the event for extra credit but was happy he assisted the performance as he is trying to acquire and gain new experiences.

“For me it is something different something new. I do not really come to events like this so for me it was a new experience and it was fun, he did great,” Cruz said.

Ieza Vega, psychology major, said “I thought it was interesting, I have never been to a pianist performance so it was new and interesting for me, I really enjoyed it.”

Dr. Andrew Maz, Chair of the Music Department and Director of Commercial Music, mentioned how they really wanted a Yamaha artist to perform at Cerritos College and Shihor was gracious and offered to come play for the school.

“We are trying to promote music and let people know that we are doing these kinds of concerts here now,” Maz said.

Maz hoped for students to get inspired by Shihors’ performance.

“For students this is an opportunity to see real artistry and to really discover what it means to be a master of an instrument,” he said.