Death of a classical guitar pioneer

Death of a classical guitar pioneer


norman lebrecht

November 07, 2017

The family has announced the death of Matanya Ophee, a vibrant figure in the classical guitar world. He was 85.

Jerusalem born and active in contemporary music, he learned to fly in the Israel air force and put his skills to use as an airline pilot when he migrated to the US in 1965.

There he formed a chamber ensemble in New Hampshire and wrote combatively for guitar journals. In 1978, he founded the publishing company Editions Orphée, becoming a cornerstone of classical guitar activity.



  • Bob Schneider says:

    Ophee was an outstanding musicologist and guitarist and energetic person. i will miss him and so will our daughter and son in law , the violin and guitar ensemble-Duo46.May his memory be for a blessing.

  • Arik Idan (Modzelevich) says:

    Matanya was an amazing person, in so many aspects of the term. He was a warm person, a sharp-of mind person, a charming person, a very gifted person, in every field… he loved art, of all kind, and specially the music. He was full of humor, and loved good food. I remember long discussions about what spices go in a specific dish, and how much of it.. His passion in life, and tremendous inspiration to everyone who had the privilege to meet him, would ensure he will be missed by so many.. He was my late father’s best friend, from childhood. I know they are together again.. i miss you guys so much..