Michael Zukernik is the Artistic Director of both the Ferenc Fricsay International Conducting Competition & the Philharmonisches Kammerorchester Berlin and Concert Media AG. He founded these organizations to provide and promote professional performance opportunities and career advancement programs.
Originally trained as a classical percussionist, Michael became the youngest member to join the Israel Symphony Orchestra Rishon LeZion and subsequently performed as the principal timpanist with numerous orchestras including the Spanish Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya and the Auckland Philharmonia in New Zealand.
After master classes with such luminaries as Jorma Panula, Colin Metters, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Colin Davis, Pierre Boulez, and comprehensive conducting studies at the University of the Arts in Berlin, the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and the Carl Maria von Weber University of Music in Dresden, Zukernik began conducting orchestras throughout Germany including the Staatskapelle Weimar, Wuppertal Symphony Orchestra, Beethoven Orchestra Bonn, and the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra.
This led to performances in major concert halls throughout Europe including Gewandhaus Leipzig, Konzerthaus Berlin, Tonhalle Zurich and Victoria Hall Geneva.
Internationally, Michael has conducted orchestras such as the Sinfonica di Roma, Russian National Orchestra, the St. Petersburg State Academy Symphony Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra, Auckland Manukau Symphony Orchestra in New Zealand and the Macau Orchestra in the People's Republic of China.
After founding the Philharmonisches Kammerorchester Berlin in 2002, including successful tours of South Korea and China, Michael Zukernik continues to serve as the orchestras Principal Conductor and combines his leadership and artistry in collaboration with many international orchestras, guest artists, soloists, and special events, having produced hundreds of classical concerts and masterclass opportunities for the next generation of conductors and concert artists as well.