Akiva Talmi is Founder of Talmi Entertainment which specializes in producing fine art tours and special events marketing, and has toured Moscow Ballet annually in N America since 1993. During his 40 year career, he has included presidential daughters in Moscow Ballet’s “Dance with Us” program, presented at the National Press Club in Washington DC and been instrumental in building the careers of dancers including Alexander Godunov, Charmaine Hunter and Valentina Kozlova. Talmi holds a BS and MA in Music Composition from The Juilliard School. He is a recipient of the Metropolitan Opera Guild Award, the Richard Rogers Award (5 times in 5 years), Leonard Bernstein Award, and the AICF Award - Isaac Stern, President. He composed the music for feature length films "Two" (CoImar), "Longest Journey" (Columbia), and for “Carnival” and “From the Top” (CPTV). Talmi founded TE Inc. in New York City in 1980 and management offices are now located in the Berkshires, Massachusetts.
Talmi created and produced the 1974 TV program “From the Top” starring world renowned violinist Itzhak Perlman and NYC Ballet star Violette Verdy for CPTV. Yale Repertory Theater provided Obie Award winning playwright Lonnie Carter and actors Chuck Levin and Paul Schirmahorn for the production. UCT provided Dr Frank Ballard, puppet master, and his team and WGBH provided innovative film/video director Fred Barzyk. In 1981 he introduced Americans to Russians star ballet dancer Alexander Godunov in the The Alexander Godunov Retrospective Ballet Tour throughout the USA. Two years later, in 1983, Talmi produced From Bolshoi to Broadway starring Bolshoi Ballet artists Leonid Kozlov and Valentina Kozlova. Later Talmi secured the starring role in the Broadway revival of “On Your Toes” for Ms. Kozlova and subsequently principal dancer positions for both Kozlovs with NYC Ballet under George Balanchine. In 1983 and 1984 the Silk, Satin and Denim tour starred Valentina Kozlova and Nina Fedorova of New York City Ballet and featured the Haute Couture designs of Ungaro, Christian Dior, Pauline Trigere, Oleg Cassini, Donna Karan, and Michael Kors. This was a promotional and marketing project for Hess Department stores. The Cynthia Gregory Celebration Tour in 1984 starred America’s Prima Ballerina Cynthia Gregory and was a 34-city ballet tour. As sponsors of this national tour US President Ronald Reagan and First Lady Nancy Reagan invited Mr. Talmi to the White House for the first ever official State Dinner on cultural events. First Lady Roselyn Carter and Vice Presidential wife Tipper Gore also served as honorary chairpersons for other tours.
1989 to 1992 saw the collapse of the “Iron Curtain” in Russia, the rise of independent ballet companies, and the rise of Talmi’s International Glasnost Festival Tours. The production traveled to 54 American cities and featured stars from the Bolshoi Ballet, the Kirov Ballet, the National Ballets of Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria and the People’s Republic of China. Accompanying seminars were presented at Yale, Dartmouth, Middlebury, Purdue, and Vanderbilt Universities. In the early 90’s “Russian Ballet Performances” at the Washington Constitutional Hall with orchestra, was aired on the National PBS TV stations and the Great Russian Nutcracker toured for the first time with a troupe of 80, award-winning dancers from top Russian schools including Bolshoi, Mariinsky, Perm and Vaganova. Talmi continues to tour Moscow Ballet annually presenting classic Russian story ballets including Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet and more.