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November 29, 2018 3:57 pm

Violinist Itzhak Perlman Performs at Pittsburgh Concert Marking One-Month Anniversary of Synagogue Shooting

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

Itzhak Perlman, right, performing with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra on Nov. 28, 2018. Photo: Screenshot.

Award-winning Israeli-American violinist Itzhak Perlman performed at a tribute concert on Tuesday night in honor of the victims of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting that took place last month.

Perlman, 73, took the stage as a guest soloist to perform alongside the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at a concert titled “A Concert for Peace and Unity.” The event, at the Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts in Pittsburgh, coincided with the one-month anniversary of the deadly attack, in which 11 people were killed.

Among the pieces Perlman performed were three songs from “Schindler’s List.”

“Music is one of the most beautiful products of humanity,” Perlman told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette before the concert. “When you see something that represents the worst of humanity, you want to confront it with some of the best of humanity. That’s what this evening is about.”

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“My response to the tragedy was plain horror,” the violinist added. “I just couldn’t believe it. Something as terrible as antisemitism, it’s not a thing of the past. It still exists. It’s not over. Hopefully education and coming together like this will bring people closer and encourage our society to become better than this. It has to be better than this.”

The victims of the shooting and the number 11 were repeatedly highlighted throughout the evening: 11 children carried 11 candles onstage as the names of those who died were read out loud; between selections, community members read tributes commemorating the victims; a group of 11 string players performed “Eli, Eli” (”My God, My God”) before a moment of silence for those who perished in the attack; and the evening ended with 11 bell tones for the victims.

PBS taped the entire performance to broadcast it nationally. It will air on Dec. 11 at 8 p.m.

Watch an excerpt of Perlman’s performance below:

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