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Ami Porat, Music Director, Mozart Classical Orchestra

The Founding Music Director and Conductor of the Mozart Classical Orchestra, is a multifaceted musician with a Diploma from the Rubin Academy in Tel Aviv in contrabass and piano, a Bachelor of Music degree from Juilliard and a Doctorate in conducting, from the University of Southern California. Under the guidance of Isaac Stern, Mr. Porat continued his musical education at the Juilliard School of Music after winning the prestigious America-Israel Cultural Foundation's Grand Prize in Israel. He studied contrabass with Gary Karr and conducting with Jean Morel, while conducting his own chamber group in New York City. In the years that followed, Mr. Porat played in orchestras in Europe, the USA and in South America as bassist and principal bassist, learning seven languages in the process and performing under some great conductors, including Leonard Bernstein, Carlo Maria Giullini and many others.

Mr. Porat founded the Mozart Classical Orchestra on Mozart's birthday anniversary on January 27, 1980. Currently in its 30th professional season as Orange County's Resident Chamber Orchestra, the Mozart Classical Orchestra has performed concert series at multiple venues in Southern California to critical acclaim from many, including the Los Angeles Times and the Orange County Register. In October 2009, the MCO inaugurated its fourth season at the new Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. The Mozart Classical Orchestra currently performs to great critical acclaim at the beautiful Irvine Barclay Theatre.