Belgian-Israeli cellist, Liav Kerbel, is increasingly recognized as a versatile and dynamic musician. He performs repertoire ranging from 18th century Baroque to the cutting edge repertoire of the 21st century. An enthusiastic traveler, he has performed as soloist and chamber musician throughout Europe and North America. His playing was described as “inspiring” and “deeply touching” by the great violin virtuoso Maxim Vengerov.
He is a major prizewinner at several international competitions, the most recent being a 4th prize winner at the VII Paulo International cello competition in Helsinki (2023). He was also a laureate at the Classic Strings international cello competition in Dubai (2022) and the winner of the Manhattan School of Music’s Eisenberg- Fried concerto competition (2018) where he performed the Shostakovich cello concerto No.1 with the MSM Philharmonia orchestra, this performance being his New-York City debut.
In June 2016 Liav made his Center for Fine Arts of Brussels debut performing the Brahms Double Concerto together with violinist Maxim Vengerov and the Belgian National Orchestra. A few years later, he performed Vivaldi’s Double Cello Concerto with the eminent cellist Mischa Maisky, who later described Liav as a “young exceptional musician”. Other performances include appearances with the Helsinki philharmonic orchestra, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Sinfonia Lahti, "I Musici di Parma", Chamber Orchestra of Bulgaria, "Nuove Musiche", the Belorussian National Philharmonic Orchestra, Pleven Symphonic Orchestra and the Flemish Symphony Orchestra.
Liav has had the honor to perform for many influential musicians including Renaud Capucon, Ivry Gitlis, Clive Greensmith, Frans Helmerson, Steven Isserlis, Hans Jørgen- Jensen, Heinrich Schiff, Ferenc Rados, Jian Wang, Uzi Wiesel, the Borromeo String Quartet and the Talich String Quartet.
A passionate chamber musician, Liav has participated in numerous summer festivals including the Perlman Music Program, the Musica Mundi chamber music course and festival in Belgium where he had the opportunity to perform the third movement of the R. Schumann piano quartet with the great pianist Menahem Pressler, the festival MusicAlp in France and the Verbier Festival Academy in Switzerland where he received the “Prix Jean- Nicholas Firmenich” for his outstanding performances in the festival.
In January 2022, Liav got appointed as the solo cello of the Saarländisches Staatstheater on a temporary contract, a position he held until July 2022. Since September 2022, he is a chamber music faculty member at the Musica Mundi School in Waterloo, Belgium.
Liav started his musical studies in Belgium with Prof. Claudine Steenackers and Prof. Vladimir Perlin. He now holds a Bachelor of Music degree as a recipient of the International Advisory Board scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music as a student of Prof. Philippe Muller. In 2021, he graduated from the New England Conservatory with a Master of Music degree under the guidance of Prof. Laurence Lesser and in 2023 he graduated from the Universität Mozarteum where he pursued a Post-Graduate degree with Prof. Giovanni Gnocchi. He is now an Artist Diploma student at the Barenboim-Said Akademie where he studies with Prof. Frans Helmerson.
Liav plays on an instrument by Giovanni Battista Cerruti, made in Cremona in 1798, generously granted on an extended loan from the Bank DELEN in Belgium, and a private donor.