Yaki Bergman conducting

Remembering Yaki Bergman

The All Classical Radio team is saddened by the passing of Yaacov “Yaki” Bergman. The Israeli-born musician was the longtime conductor of the Walla Walla Symphony, the Portland Chamber Orchestra, the Siletz Bay Music Festival, and more. He was renowned in Oregon, across the country, and around the world for his dedication to classical music, chamber music, and the arts.

Those who knew him will always remember him as an amazing conductor and human, always full of music and optimism. He will be missed. Our hearts go out to Yaki’s family, friends, and all of the musicians who have played under his leadership.


Join us Monday, September 25, 2023, at 5:00 PM PT to hear host Andrea Murray’s tribute to Yaki Bergman.

All Classical Radio host Andrea Murray’s tribute to Yaki Bergman


Born in Israel, Bergman’s early musical training began with violin and vocal studies, but he soon expressed an avid interest in composing and conducting. After graduation from the Rubin Academy of the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, with majors in conducting and composition, he completed post-graduate studies at the Mannes College of Music in New York as a student of Richard Westenburg. He pursued further conducting studies under the guidance of Charles Bruck, a disciple of Pierre Monteux, as well as private study under Leonard Bernstein. In 1998 he was the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from Colorado Technical University.

Maestro Bergman was the Music Director/Conductor of the Portland Chamber Orchestra, the Walla Walla Symphony, the Siletz Bay Music Festival in Lincoln City OR and the McCall SummerFest, ID. He was the former Music Director of the Colorado Springs Symphony, The New York Heritage Symphony, and the 92nd St. Y Orchestra in New York City. His versatility led to frequent guest appearances across the globe conducting the symphonic, operatic, oratorio, balletic and pops repertoires.

Keep reading at portlandchamberorchestra.org.

Rest in peace, Maestro.

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