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Jonathan Vinocour, Viola - presented by Gualala Arts Chamber Music Series
Gualala Arts Center
Gualala, CA
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Jonathan Vinocour, Viola - presented by Gualala Arts Chamber Music Series
Jonathan Vinocour, the principal violist for the San Francisco Symphony, will perform as part of the Gualala Arts Chamber Music Series. Vinocour is regarded as one of the most exciting and thoughtful violists of his generation.

Mr. Vinocour joined the San Francisco Symphony as Principal Violist in 2009, having previously served as principal violist of the Saint Louis Symphony and guest principal of the Gewandhaus Orchestra of Leipzig. A native of Rochester, New York, Mr. Vinocour graduated from Princeton University in 2001 with a degree in chemistry and was awarded the university's Sudler Prize in the Arts. He completed his master's degree in 2003 at the New England Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Kim Kashkashian.

As a soloist, Mr. Vinocour has appeared with the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra under maestros Hans Graf and Nicholas McGegan and with the San Francisco Symphony under Michael Tilson Thomas in Berlioz's Harold in Italy and Morton Feldman's Rothko Chapel. His first solo album, featuring works of Britten and Shostakovich, was recorded with the support of the Holland America Music Society after he won the Society's Competition prior to joining the San Francisco Symphony. Mr. Vinocour was also a featured recitalist at the 2012 International Viola Congress and enjoys recital opportunities around the Bay Area each season.

As an increasingly active pedagogue, Vinocour has presented master classes at conservatories around the country and abroad. He is a regular coach at the New World Symphony in Miami, an orchestral training academy directed by Michael Tilson Thomas, and is also on the faculty of the newly formed San Francisco Academy Orchestra's Artist Diploma program for orchestral training.

An avid chamber musician, Mr. Vinocour can be heard regularly on the Symphony's Chamber Music Series at Davies Hall, and on the Florence Gould Series at the Legion of Honor. He has been a regular participant at the Marlboro Music Festival and has toured extensively with Musicians from Marlboro in past seasons; he has participated in numerous other festivals, including the Steans Institute at the Ravinia Festival, Open Chamber Music at Prussia Cove, the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, the Aspen Music Festival, and the Tanglewood Music Center.

Mr. Vinocour has been a guest of the Boston Chamber Music Society and International Sejong Soloists and collaborated with artists such as Paula Robison, Yefim Bronfman, Gilbert Kalish, Miriam Fried, Yo Yo Ma, Jaime Laredo, and members of the Amadeus, Arditti, Cleveland, Guarneri, Juilliard, Jupiter, Mendelssohn, and Orion string quartets. He is a founding member and regular performer with ECCO (East Coast Chamber Orchestra), a conductor-less chamber ensemble based in New York. Mr. Vinocour plays on a viola made by Lorenzo Storioni in 1784 on kind loan from the San Francisco Symphony.

Appointed to the San Francisco Symphony's first chair in 2009, he succeeded Geraldine Walther who held the position for three decades. He leads a section of 13 violists and performs at least one solo a year with the world-class orchestra. "An orchestra like the San Francisco Symphony has the pick of the top orchestral musicians in the world," says Princeton University Orchestra conductor Michael Pratt, "so this makes Jonathan one of the leading violists on the planet." Vinocour observes that "while some musicians live from gig to gig, orchestral positions are very secure. Gaining one is similar to professorial tenure."

Early on Vinocour was drawn to string instruments. As a fifth-grader in Rochester, N.Y. he zeroed in on the viola, in part because he liked the idea that it was unusual since most people played the violin or the cello. He describes the viola's sound as "a little bit more warm and rich versus brilliant and bright," comparing it to the qualities of a violin. At Princeton, where he was section leader for violas in the orchestra while also majoring in Chemistry, it wasn't always easy balancing academics and music. During exam time he had to forgo practice. But summers and breaks were spent playing festivals, and by graduation he had his sights set on making it as a violist.

Vinocour developed his musical inspirations from his great chamber music experiences in high school. His favorite composers include Bach, Kurtág, Beethoven, Bartók and Schumann. His favorite works for viola are Berlioz, Harold in Italy, Britten, Lachrymae, and Walton, Viola Concerto. When not performing, Vinocour enjoys tennis, soccer, cooking for friends and backpacking. Although his career is centered on symphony and chamber music, he enjoys listening to Modest Mouse, Arcade Fire and Led Zeppelin on his iPod.

Tickets are $25 advance; $5 more day of concert (buy your tickets early!). Children and young people ages 7 through 17 are admitted free with adult. To purchase in person, visit the Gualala Arts Center or Dolphin Gallery in Gualala



Gualala Arts Center (View)
46501 Gualala Road
Gualala, CA 95445
United States

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Music > Classical

Minimum Age: 7
Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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