Violinist Stephen Tavani is Assistant Concertmaster of The Cleveland Orchestra and has appeared as guest concertmaster with many other orchestras including the Indianapolis, Houston and Kansas City Symphonies. The New York Times commented about his playing that “…Tavani sometimes cooled his tone to the smoothness of frosted glass, adding a soft-focus filter to the chiseled melodies…”. He has collaborated as soloist with conductors Carlos Miguel Prieto, Andrew Litton, and Miriam Burns. Before joining The Cleveland Orchestra in 2018, he was concertmaster of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia for one season.
An avid chamber musician, Tavani has collaborated with many great musicians, such as Edgar Meyer, members of Quatuor Ébène, Roberto Díaz, Peter Wiley, Paul Katz, Shai Wosner, Meng-Chieh Liu, Jon Kimura Parker, Ronald Leonard, Clive Greensmith, Marcy Rosen, José Franch-Ballester, and Daniel Hope. He has appeared at the Dresden Music Festival, Music From Angel Fire, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Colburn Chamber Music Society, Curtis Recital Series, and at the Marlboro Music Festival as well as on tour with Musicians from Marlboro. He also has taught masterclasses at the Cleveland Institute of Music young artist program and at conservatories in Spain and Germany.
Tavani has appeared at the Sibelius International Violin Competition in Helsinki, the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels, and the Michael Hill Violin Competition in New Zealand. Tavani holds an Artist Diploma from the Curtis Institute of Music, where he studied with Ida Kavafian and Arnold Steinhardt. While at Curtis, he held the Dorothy J. del Bueno Fellowship. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Colburn Conservatory in Los Angeles, where he studied with Robert Lipsett. He also received an Artist Diploma from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where he worked with William Preucil in the Concertmaster Academy program. Other previous teachers include Aaron Rosand, Shirley Givens, and Ronda Cole. He plays on a W.E. Hill & Sons bow generously loaned by Tom Frisina.
Tavani volunteers bringing string programs to Northeast Ohio inmates with the Cleveland based Renovare to help provide hope and healing through music. He is a member of Third Culture Ensemble, which serves diverse communities across Northeast Ohio through music. He also is involved with the MasterWorks Festival, which seeks to integrate Christian faith and life in the performing arts. Tavani resides on the East Side of Cleveland with his wife Amanda, a double bassist and music educator, and their son, Gabriel. He grew up in Northern Virginia in a musical family of six brothers. His mother is a voice teacher and lyric soprano, his father a family physician and pianist. Learn more about Mr. Tavani at his website: stephentavani.com, and visit his youtube page at youtube.com/stavani1 to see many of his performances.