Harris Shilakowsky, conductor

Harris Shilakowsky, the music director of the Bristol Chamber Orchestra, has appeared as violin soloist with the New Orleans, Omaha and Charleston Symphony Orchestras, the New England Conservatory and Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestras, and in live recitals on NPR Stations in Boston, Omaha and Nashville. He also performs with groups such as the Boston Lyric Opera, the Boston Pops Orchestra, the Boston Ballet, Pro Arté Chamber Orchestra, the Boston Lyric Opera Co., and the American Symphony.   In 1994, Mr. Shilakowsky was a guest leader of the London Symphony Orchestra under music director Michael Tilson Thomas and conductors Sir George Solti, Sir Colin Davis and André Previn in performances with Jessye Norman, Yuri Bashmet, Peter Zimmerman, and Kiri Te Kanawa. 

He is a former concertmaster of the Charleston, New Orleans, Omaha, Grand Rapids, and Las Palmas Symphony Orchestras, and the Des Moines Metro Opera Orchestra.  He has also performed with the Boston, Chautauqua and Nashville Symphonies, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Handel-Haydn Society of Boston, the Opera Company of Boston, the Lyric Opera Company of Boston and the Boston Ballet, in Broadway productions in Boston, New York, Providence and Germany. 

Shilakowsky is also the leader of the Shilakowsky String Quartet, former first violinist of the DeVos Quartet and the Omaha Symphony String Quartet. He was also first violinist of the Omaha Symphony Quartet, the College of Charleston String Quartet and the Nasvhille Symphony Quartet. He has formed and performed with many other chamber groups. He also coaches & conducts stduent and professional chamber music ensembles. 

Shilakowsky conducts and performs as violin soloist of the Bristol Chamber Orchestra, a professional ensemble dedicated to performing music of all periods in diverse settings, educational concerts & special events including choral concerts. He will also be the director of the New Community Chamber Orchestra of Sharon, which will begin regular rehearsals in September of 2003. 

In 2002, Shilakowsky was guest conductor of the Rocky Ridge Music Festival Orchestra (YAS program).  He has conducted chamber orchestra concerts in Grand Rapids and Baroque readings in Germany with international musical colleagues. He has also directed rehearsals with youth orchestras in Burlington, VT and at New England Conservatory of Music. 

In 1988, he founded & directed the Strauss Orchestra of Boston and conducted fund-raising concerts featuring Strauss Waltz Evenings for Pro Arté Chamber Orchestra and the Boston Philharmonic. 

As solo violinist, Shilakowsky has appeared with the New Orleans, Omaha and Charleston Symphony Orchestras, the New England Conservatory and Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestras performing Mozart, Bach and Dvorak Violin Concertos, Vaughan-Williams' "Lark Ascending"  and Ravel's "Tzigane", the Brahms Concerto and Chausson "Poeme" and in live recitals on NPR Stations in Boston, Omaha and Nashville. He performed recitals in 1999 in Brockton, MA at Temple Beth Emunah, in 1998 at the Newton Free Public Library & Jewish Community Center in Newton, MA, and in Johannesburg & Pietersburg, South Africa. 

Shilakowsky earned his Bachelor of Music cum laudé from New England Conservatory of Music and a Master's Degree from Yale University.  His teachers include Joseph Silverstein, Koichiro Harada, Nancy Cirillo, and Leo Panasevich of the Boston Symphony Orchestra; David Cerone, Vali Bluttner, Yair Kless, Joseph Gingold, Louis Krasner, Rudolph Kolisch, Eugene Lehner, Oscar Shumsky and members of the Tokyo Quartet.  He is a Tanglewood alumnus and an active composer.  He has been listed in 'Who's Who in Musical America'.  He has taught at New England Conservatory Preparatory School, the Thayer Conservatory, The South Shore Conservatory, where he was the head of the string department, and as an adjunct professor at the College of Charleston.  He currently teaches string instruments and coaches ensembles in the BCO Ensemble Program, coaches sectionals for GBYSO. He has served as adjudicator for competitions at NEC, Massachusetts Music Educators, and auditions for NEC Youth Chamber Orchestra, working with Benjamin Zander and Mark Churchill.

About the Bristol Chamber Orchestra (BCO)

Violinist Harris Shilakowsky, formed the professional ensemble, the Bristol Chamber Orchestra in 1999 and is its Music Director. 
The Bristol Chamber Orchestra is a virtuoso chamber orchestra consisting of a core of 15 strings, keyboard, and additional woodwinds, brass & percussion as needed. The musicians are professionals drawn from the rich cultural scene of the Boston area. Most hold positions in other well-known area orchestras such as the Boston Ballet, the Boston Lyric Opera, the Rhode Island Philharmonic and the Boston Pops. The great musical schools in the area-Boston University, New England Conservatory, Brown University to name a few, provide us with new prodigies as well as sharing some of their professors with us as performers. The goal of the Bristol Chamber Orchestra is to bring quality musical performances, educational activities and other events to the southeastern part of the state of Massachusetts, and to present concerts & worldwide tours. Under the umbrella of the Chamber Music Society of Easton, a non-profit organization, they sponsor activities which enable both amateur and professional musicians to share the experience of music making, listening, and learning. They present renowned guest soloists including members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and also collaborate with other area performing groups, including choruses and composers. 
Last May's BCO concert...a memorable conclusion to our 3rd season, showcased young piano protegés with international competitive experience playing works by Bach, Beethoven & Bloch. So successful was that concert that we have scheduled another of these Young Concert Artists programs, sponsored by the BCO Music Scholarship Fund in May 2003. The students featured this year are enrolled at the Sharon Academy of Music, Tanya Schwartzman, director & professor of the piano. 
Special Concerts have included our Christmas Service Concert with Members of the Bristol Chamber Orchestra December 17, 2000 at United Church of Christ in Canton, MA, performed with the choir from the First Church of Dedham, MA, and a collaborative concert with the Neponset Choral Society at the Orpheum Theater in Foxborough, MA on December 9, 2000 at 8:00 pm and repeated at 3:00 pm on December 10, 2000 , and a concert of Jewish Music performed at Temple Sinai in Sharon, MA on June 3rd, 2001, including compositions by Ben-Haim, Prokofieff, Milhaud, Osbourne and others. 
Small ensembles consisting of members of Bristol Chamber Orchestra play chamber concerts, such as the Braintree Public Library performance sponsored by the Music Performance Trust Fund; "JAZZ CLASSICS for STRING QUARTET including Music of Cole Porter, George Gershwin, George Shearing & Joplin". BCO chamber ensembles and featured performers have appeared at the Heights Crossing in Brockton, MA, and other venues. 

BCO 2005-6 Season 

Spring Concert at Steinert Hall 
Boston, MA 
June 24, 3:30 pm 

previous concerts: 

BCO 2002-3 season 

Concert #1 Fall Classics 
November 3, 2002 2 pm at the First Baptist Church - Sharon, MA 
Mozart Symphony #29 
Mozart 5th Violin Concerto, the "Turkish", featuring 
Victor Romanul of the Boston Symphony Orchestra 
Edvard Grieg "Two Elegaic Melodies" 
Edward Elgar "Serenade for Strings" 

Concert #2 
A Concert of French Composers 
February 9, 2003 2 pm at Temple Beth Emunah 479 Torrey Street, Brockton, MA 
Camille Saint-Saens "Prelude to the Deluge" 
for string orchestra 

Claude Debussy "Danse Sacre et Profane" 
Maurice Ravel "Introduction and Allegro" 
featuring Judy Saiki Couture, harp 

Concert #3 May 4, 2003 
Young Artists Concert

featuring pianists of the Sharon Academy of Music at the First Baptist Church, South Main Street, Sharon, MA 
Haydn Piano Concerto in D featuring pianists Ari Kriegel, Helen Gong & Brendon Bloch 
Saint-Saens Carnivale of the Animals featuring duo pianists Grace Han &Luke Zhou 
Joaquin Turina's Rapsodia Sinfonica with pianist, Shi Shi Chen