Pinchas Zukerman (Hebrew: פנחס צוקרמן, born July 16, 1948) is a world-renowned violinist, violist, and conductor. He is considered one of the greatest violinists of the 20th and 21st centuries, and his ongoing 45-year career has seen him perform with the world's best-known orchestras and record over 100 works. Zukerman has held the position of Principal Conductor and Music Director of Ottawa's National Arts Centre Orchestra since April 1998, and the position of Principal Guest Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra since 2009.
Zukerman was born in Tel Aviv to Yehuda and Miriam Lieberman Zukerman. At the age of 4 he was introduced to the recorder and then clarinet by his father, and picked up the violin at the age of 8. His talent on that instrument was discovered by Isaac Stern and Pablo Casals during their trip to Israel in 1962, which resulted in his 1962 move to the United States for study at the Juilliard School, under the tutelage of Stern and Ivan Galamian. He made his New York début in 1963 and in 1967 shared the prestigious Leventritt Prize with the Korean violinist Kyung-wha Chung. His 1969 debut recordings of the concerti by Tchaikovsky (under the direction of Antal Dorati, with the London Symphony Orchestra) and Mendelssohn (with Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic) launched a successful recording career that continues to the present day and boasts over 110 releases.
Zukerman launched his conducting career in 1970 with the English Chamber Orchestra, and was particularly active during the early 1970s as Director of the Southbank Festival in London (1971–1974). From 1980 to 1987 Zukerman was the director of the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra in Minnesota, and later directed the summer festivals of the Dallas (1991–1995) and Baltimore (1996–1999) symphony orchestras. He has collaborated with filmmaker Christopher Nupen on several projects, and was the subject of Nupen's "Pinchas Zukerman: Here to Make Music" documentary of 1974.