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Auckland Philharmonia appoints new Concertmaster

Auckland Philharmonia appoints new Concertmaster

DIMITRI ATANASSOV has been appointed the Auckland Philharmonia’s new Concertmaster.

Since July 2004, following the departure of Concertmaster Justine Cormack, Dimitri has been Acting Concertmaster of the Auckland Philharmonia. Prior to that he was the orchestra’s Sub-Principal Second Violins, a position he took up in 1995 when he migrated to New Zealand.

Considered a natural musician, Dimitri plays with a beautiful sound. He is a highly regarded teacher, with many of his students achieving great success in national and international competitions.

Dimitri says it is an honour to be appointed Concertmaster of the Auckland Philharmonia. “As we celebrate our 25th anniversary I’m greatly looking forward to leading the orchestra, onwards and upwards, into the future. This is an exciting time to be part of the Auckland Philharmonia and I will do everything I can to fulfil my obligations and ensure the orchestra remains the great Auckland icon it is. On a personal level, this appointment gives me both opportunities and challenges in performing some of the great violin solos and working with some of the leading artists and conductors of our time.”

Auckland Philharmonia General Manager Anne Rodda says, “The appointment of a concertmaster is a critical one for any orchestra – but particularly so for the Auckland Philharmonia at this important stage of growth and development. Dimitri has fulfilled his trial superbly, has earned the highest respect from his colleagues, and the audience has clearly warmed to him.”

Born in 1970, Bulgarian violinist Dimitri Atanassov gave his first public performance at the age of six. After many years studying with his father, the renowned Bulgarian violinist Joachim Atanassov, and later with Anna Ivanova, Dimitri excelled in his studies at the Prague Academy of Arts under the guidance of Vaclav Snitil, completing his Masters degree (with honours) in 1994.

Having participated in master classes with violinists Alberto Lysy and Victor Liberman, Dimitri was selected as leader of the RIAS Youth Orchestra in Berlin from 1992 until 1994. As soloist and chamber musician, he performed in Austria, Germany, Greece, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Italy, Yugoslavia, Russia, Holland and Israel, before migrating to New Zealand in 1995.

In New Zealand he performs regularly as a chamber musician and soloist. He is co-founder and artistic director of the Rotorua Chamber Music Festival, and in 1996 he became a member of the Ogen Trio. He has been a violin tutor at Waikato University since 1999 and in 2003 he also became a violin tutor at the University of Auckland.

Dimitri became a New Zealand citizen in 1998. He and his wife Rosemary Pearson-Atanassov have a two year old daughter, Alexandra.

The Auckland Philharmonia receives major funding from Creative New Zealand and major grants from Auckland City and the ASB Charitable Trust.

ENDS

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