Oliver Aldort was born in 1993 and grew up on Orcas Island, WA. He has been featured on Komo TV, CBC radio, NPR "From the Top," and British TV documentary "The World's Greatest Musical Prodigies."
Mr Aldort has won numerous competitions including MTNA National Winner 2007 and Seattle Young Artists Music Festival Winner 2008 & 2010. He gave his debut recital at the age of seven and continued to perform through his youth garnering critical acclaim. "The immediate impression of the listener is one of complete astonishment," (La Press, Montreal.)
Aldort has been a soloist with orchestras on cello and piano since the age of ten. His solos have included cello concertos by Dvorak, Schumann, Saint Saens, Elgar and Haydn as well as Popper’s Hungarian Rhapsody, and two late piano concertos of Mozart. He made his conducting debut at fifteen with the Overture to Don Giovanni.
Mr. Aldort has performed on the east and west coasts of the USA and Canada. He has also appeared at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland and the Tanglewood Music Center. Aldort's teachers have included Lynn Harrell, Amos Yang and Ron Leonard. He is currently a student at the Curtis Institute of Music under the tutelage of Peter Wiley and Carter Brey.
"Anybody who expected the Saint-Saens Cello Concerto No.1 (with the Symphony) to be a mere novelty would have been more than surprised. Oliver Aldort may have just turned 11, he may be slightly shorter than his cello, but he already has a remarkable technique, impeccable intonation and produces a fine tone. More than that, though, and unlike a number of teenage wunderkind who have been foisted on the world in the recent years, Aldort doesn't just play the notes, he is clearly a musician and gave a musician's performance. We shall be hearing more from this young man."
Victoria Times Columnist (Unsolicited critique)
Aldort has appeared on KOMO TV, and was featured on national public radio in the program "From the Top" recorded live in Jordan Hall in Boston. He was also heard on CBC radio in Vancouver and has appeared as a chamber music player with Beethoven Duke trio, Schumann quartet in F major and more.
"Oliver Aldort is, quite simply, the most gifted cello talent of my entire experience, the most advanced child I have ever heard of. More than that - he is a mature musician."
R.J. Davis, Former principal cellist of the Seattle symphony
For Oliver, the greatest pleasure of his musical career is performing. From his debut recital at the age of seven (after one year of lessons), through the state, regional and national competitions, recitals and solos, Oliver's love of performing has only increased. On the way to the national competition, Oliver's mom assured Oliver again and again that he had already won with her and that it didn't matter if he won the national level of the competition. Oliver said, "I enter the room to win, and then I am fine with whatever happens."
"Oliver had to nag me to learn to play the cello," says his mother Naomi Aldort. Author of Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves and an internationally published parenting advice columnist, Naomi says, "It's my philosophy to wait until they nag the way they do for a candy, and then I know it's the child's passion, not mine."
Oliver gave his full debut recital on cello and piano at age seven, after one year of lessons to an almost full house on Orcas center theater stage.
Oliver's three quarter size cello has been awarded to him by the Carlsen Foundation in recognition of his talent and dedication to music.
Oliver is a self-directed learner. He does not attend school, does not watch TV, and his musical path is his own initiative.
"Oliver has an OUTSTANDING musical talent. He is one of the most gifted, capable, musically advanced children that I have ever came across."
Principal Cello, CBC Radio Orchestra,
Professor of Music, Cello University of North Texas
Here is some additional and more personal information:
Oliver's days are spent mostly with music on his own initiative. You can find him practicing, improvising, listening, conducting or playing by ear or from symphonic or operatic score most hours of the day. A break from practice is often piano improvisation, sight-reading or conducting. Other loves of his are his cat Beethoven, reading, swimming, ping-pong, hiking and sight seeing.
Oliver has composed a symphony movement and other pieces and he has been analyzing the chords progression of Chopin Etudes, Bach Well Tempered Clavier and Mozart Sonatas; music he plays. Currently he is studying counterpoint with Professor Clenman and conducting with Roupen Shakarian.
Oliver has perfect pitch and can detect the slightest intonation fluctuations. When he listens to Jacqueline Du Pre's Dvorak concerto he says, "The orchestra starts high and then Jacqueline pushes it higher and higher. If his mother hums a symphony, he says, "Mom you are in the wrong key, and between two notes." When turning on a classical music station while in the car, Oliver tells immediately what key we are listening to and how it is changing.
It is interesting to watch Oliver's lessons. There is very little use of scores. He works from memory and can start anywhere without referring to the notes. The same is true in rehearsals with the orchestra or with an accompanist.