Felix Galimir

Felix Galimir was an Austrian-born American-Jewish violinist and music teacher.
Born in a Sephardic Jewish family Vienna; his first language was Ladino. He studied with Adolf Bak and Simon Pullman at the Vienna Conservatory from the age of twelve and graduated in 1928. With his three sisters he founded the Galimir Quartet in 1927 to commemorate the centenary of the death of Ludwig van Beethoven. During the early 1930s Galimir studied with Carl Flesch in Berlin In 1936, the Galimir Quartet recorded the Lyric Suite of Alban Berg and the String Quartet of Maurice Ravel under the supervision of the composers, who were present during the rehearsals and recording sessions. In 1936, he joined the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. He was harassed because of his Jewish ethnicity – at one performance, writes the New York Times, "just as the lights went down, the principal clarinetist called out, in a voice audible throughout the theater, 'Galimir – have you eaten your matzos today?'". The next season, the orchestra expelled him because he was Jewish. He then emigrated to Palestine to join the newly founded Palestine Symphony Orchestra.

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