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Maestro Nebu Issabey

Posted: Tuesday, July 03, 2001 at 05:22 PM CT

Nebu Issabey, born in Iran, came to Chicago in 1973, after a notable career abroad as a violinist, music teacher and director of choral groups. Maestro Nebu Issabey began his musical career in Iran with violin instructions from his mother. From this stemmed a productive student/professor relationship with the famous Italian violinist, Luigi Pazanari.

From the age of 16 to 25, Maestro Issabey played violin concertos of Paganini, Beethoven, Brahms and Sibelius.

It was during this period that he won many highly coveted "Pazanari Prizes." In 1955, Maestro Issabey organized the first Assyrian choir in Tehran, consisting of thirty members. By 1960, his choir, "Nineveh", had grown to one hundred and fifty when the choir was ranked as the leading choir in the Middle East.

Nineveh Choir's performance of Garriel Foure's Requiem and Bach's Motet No.3 brought recognition to Maestro Issabey throughout Iran.

In 1966, the Nineveh Choir was chosen by the Iranian Fine Arts Institute as the top ranking Choir in the country. Maestro Issabey and his choir performed before His Imperial Majesty, the Shah of Iran, where Maestro Issabey was officially presented to His Majesty.

He entered the Music Academy of Cologne, Germany, where for six years he studied under Professors Joachim Blume and Kaufhold. Maestro Issabey performed in the Academy of Music of Cologne and on radio and television in Germany. Two medals for his accomplishments have been awarded him: Cologne's Academy of Music's medal for short compositions for oboe and piano and the Medal of Carnaval, affording recognition as the top composer of Cologne. In 1973, he left Cologne with his wife and daughter to come to the United States, where their second daughter was born.

Maestro Issabey believes that an abundant talent abides within the Assyrian community and many of its members are also interested in promoting the cultural arts.

Maestro Nebu Issabey, currently residing in San Jose, California, is the director of the Nineveh Choir.

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