YEREVAN (Armenpress)—The young Armenian cellist Sevak Avanesyan has become the first lead cellist, or concertmaster, of the Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra, his father Samvel Avanesyan reported to Armenpress.
Avanesyan was appointed to the position after winning a contest to determine who would replace the vacant seat left by the Philharmonic’s previous concertmaster.
“128 candidates out of 1000 applicants were provided with the opportunity to participate in the contest. Competition was intense,” Avanesyan’s father Samvel said. “As Sevak did not allow us to be present at the contest, I called him at the end of the day with fear in my heart and he told us that four of them had passed to the finals.”
Later the winner was revealed to be Sevak Avanesyan, whose performance won the jury’s admiration.
Sevak Avanesyan was born in 1989 in Armenia, into a musical family. After the Spitak Earthquake of 1988, they moved to Yerevan, where he started studying the cello at age 5 with well-known Armenian cellist, Medea Abrahamyan, student of legendary Mstislav Rostropovitsch. He went on to study at the Tchaikovsky Specialized Secondary and Musical School in Yerevan until 2003. That year, his entire family moved to Brussels, Belgium, where he joined the class of Viviane Spanoghe at the Royal Conservatory. He graduated there with the highest distinction in 2010. The same year he was accepted in the class of the renowned cellist Claudio Bohorquez at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin.
Besides his regular studies, Sevak Avanesyan has received precious advice from world famous artists, such as Janos Starker, Steven Isserlis, Maria Kliegel, Liuis Claret, Peter Bruns, Garry Hofman, Wolfgang Boettcher and Igor Oistrakh.
Since the youngest age, Sevak Avanesyan has travelled the world. As a member of the “Young Virtuosos” of AMAA. Sevak performed as soloist and chamber musician in Europe, USA, Canada, China, in halls as prestigious as the Salle Gaveau in Paris, the Ford Hall of Toronto, the Sidney Opera House, and the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels. More recent concert seasons brought him to such venues as the Festival de Radio France Montpellier, the Festival of Menton and the Brahms Festival in Brussels.
An ardent chamber musician, Sevak Avanesyan is a permanent member of the Avanesyan Piano Trio, studying with the Artemis Quartet at the Queen Elisabeth College of Music. The Avanesyan Piano Trio received the Golden Label prize from the Belgian Music Press Association in 2012.
He has equally collaborated with Augustin Dumay, Philippe Graffin and Pascal Devoyon, Pavel Gililov, as well as with some of the most respected musicians of the younger generation: Alexander Khramuchin, Lily Maisky, Julien Libeer, Alissa Margulis, and his brother Hrachya Avanesyan.
He is a laureate of many international competitions, such as the International Cello Competition “Gerardmer” (France), the European Competition for Young Soloists (Luxemburg), the Sint-Pieters-Woluwe Cello Competition, the Belgische Stichting Roeping (Belgium), and most recently the Lions Club International Cello Competition. Sevak Avanesyan plays on the very first Matio Gofriller cello from 1689 kindly given to him by Mischa Maisky.