Alf Bishai



My ambition, my dream, is to write something so beautiful and searing and simple that all of New York is devastated by it and listens to it on repeat. Once at the philharmonic, I sat across the aisle from a distinguished, bearded gentleman in his fifties. He was frowning thoughtfully at the symphony here and there in pained captivation. I’ve forgotten his actual face; he’s just come to mean ‘a New Yorker’ to me. In my mind, I swapped the Tchaikovsky with the piece I was writing at the time, and really believed he would have made the same faces at my music. There is nothing higher or more thrilling in my books. I always write for that stranger.


Alf lives in New York with his two kids. He teaches theory and solfege at NYU.

  • Name: Alf Bishai
  • Location: New York, NY
  • Categories: A-L