Yitzhak Graziani

Born: August 4th, 1924, Ruse (Bulgaria)
Died: July 7th, 2003, Petach Tikva (Israel)
Nationality: Israeli (formerly: Bulgarian)

Yitzhak Graziani, nicknamed ‘Ziko’, studied conducting at the Music Academy of Sofia, before moving to Israel in 1948. He became the conductor of the IDF Orchestra, and later was contracted by national broadcaster IBA to conduct its Radio Orchestra (later renamed: IBA Radio and Television Orchestra), which Graziani would go on to do for many years; he was the musical director of many Israeli Eurovision heats in the 1970s. His most played composition is no doubt ‘Variations on Haydn’s Theme for French horn and concert band’ (1984).

Graziani was the musical director of the Eurovision Song Contest which was held in Jerusalem in 1979. Although Graziani did not conduct any entry (for the performance of the Israeli song ‘Hallelujah’, his IBA Orchestra was placed under the direction of composer Kobi Oshrat), he certainly made his mark in the programme by conducting one of the most spectacular interval acts in the history of the Eurovision Song Contest, ‘Shalom ‘79’, a combination of traditional Israeli folk dance and music.

In due course, a more extensive biography of Yitzhak Graziani will be published on this website


Musical director
1979: Jerusalem