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World-renowned classical pianist and composer Emahoy Tsege Mariam dies at 99

Addis Ababa, March 27, 2023 (FBC) – The World’s renowned classical pianist and composer, Emahoy Tsegemariam has died at age of 99 in Jerusalem, Israel.

Emahoy Tsege Mariam Gebru was born Yewubdar Gebru in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on December 12, 1923. At the age of six she and her sister, Senedu Gebru were sent to boarding school in Switzerland, where Emahoy Tsege Mariam Gebru studied violin.

Four years later, in 1933, she returned to Ethiopia to continue her studies at the Empress Menen Secondary School. She gave her first violin recital at age of ten.

Following the victory of Ethiopia over the Fascist Italy in 1941, Emahoy studied under the Polish violinist Alexander Kontorowicz in Cairo, Egypt.

Upon her return to Ethiopia, Emahoy Tsegemariam, the nun of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahdo Church started her musical career.

Emahoy’s first record was released in 1967. The proceeds from this and subsequent releases from the 1970s went to help an orphanage. She continued to compose music, mostly for piano, but also for organ.

​In 1984, after her mother’s death, Emahoy went to the Ethiopian Monastery in Jerusalem where she has spent her final days.

Emahoy Tsege Mariam Gebru composed more than 150 original works of music for piano, organ, opera, and chamber ensembles. She gave all of her copyrights to The Foundation in order to generate revenue and provide children with financial need access to music education.


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