Violinist Ani Kavafian is enjoying a prolific career as a soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician. She has performed with virtually all of America’s leading orchestras including the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Symphony, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of St. Louis, Delaware, Detroit, San Francisco, Atlanta, Seattle, Minneapolis, Utah, and Rochester. Her numerous solo recital engagements include performances at New York’s Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully, as well as in venues across the country.
In recent years, she has premiered and recorded a number of important new works written for her, including Henri Lazarof’s Divertimento for Violin and String Orchestra with the Seattle Symphony, Todd Machover’s concerto Forever and Ever, for computerized violin and orchestra with the Boston Modern, and Michelle Ekizian’s Red Harvest with the Brooklyn Philharmonic. In addition, Ms. Kavafian gave the west coast premiere of Aaron Kernis’ Double Concerto for Violin and Guitar, with guitarist Sharon Isbin and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra.
Ms. Kavafian has appeared around the country with her sister, violinist and violist Ida Kavafian. Together in recital, and as soloists, they have performed with the symphonies of Detroit, Colorado, Tucson, San Antonio, and Cincinnati, and have recorded the music of Mozart and Sarasate on the Nonesuch label. They will be celebrating the 25 th anniversary of their first performance at Carnegie Hall in the fall of 2008.
Ani Kavafian is an Artist-Member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in New York, touring with them throughout the U. S. and Canada, in addition to performing, since 1979, in their regular series at New York’s Alice Tully Hall. She is in great demand at renowned summer music festivals such as Ravinia, Chamber Music Northwest, Seattle Chamber Music Festival, OK Mozart, Virginia Waterfront International Arts Festival, Music from Angel Fire, and Bridgehampton.
She is a member of the daSalo String Trio with violist Barbara Wesphal and cellist Gustav Rivinius. Recently, Ms. Kavafian has joined with clarinetist David Shifrin and pianist Andre-Michel Schub and will be performing as violinist and violist with them. Along with cellist Carter Brey, she is the artistic director of the New Jersey chamber music series “Mostly Music.”
Ms. Kavafian’s list of prestigious awards includes the Avery Fisher Prize and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions. She has appeared at the White House on three separate occasions and has been featured on many network and PBS television music specials. Her recordings can be heard on the Nonesuch, RCA, Columbia, Arabesque and Delos labels. This past fall Ms. Kavafian and Kenneth Cooper released a live recording of Bach’s Six Sonatas for Violin and Fortepiano on the Kleos Classics label of Helicon Records.
Born in Istanbul, Turkey of Armenian descent, Ani Kavafian began her musical studies with piano lessons at the age of three. At age nine, shortly after her family moved to the United States, she began the study of the violin with Ara Zerounian and, at 16, won first prize in both the piano and violin competitions at the National Music Camp in Interlochen, Michigan. Two years later, she began violin studies at the Juilliard School with Ivan Galamian, eventually receiving a master’s degree with highest honors.
Ms. Kavafian resides in Northern Westchester, New York with her husband, artist Bernard Mindich, and their son, Matthew, now a student at the University of Puget Sound. She is on the faculties of both Yale and Stony Brook Universities. She plays the 1736 Muir McKenzie Stradivarius violin.