First Violin

Born in Tokyo, violinist Karen Gomyo began her musical career in Montreal and New York before making Berlin her home. Her 2018-19 season highlights include debuts with the Philharmonia Orchestra with Jakub Hrůša, the Royal Northern Sinfonia with Karina Canellakis, and the BBC Symphony with Ben Gernon at the opening concert of the Dubai Proms, as well as returns to the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, and the orchestras of Minnesota, Houston, Oregon, Saint Louis, Vancouver, and Dallas. She made her San Francisco Symphony debut in 2007.

In Europe, Ms. Gomyo has most recently performed with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Bamberg Symphony, Danish National Symphony, Orchestre Symphonique de Radio France, Residentie Orkest, Stuttgart Radio Symphony, Vienna Chamber Orchestra, Polish National Radio Orchestra, and the WDR Symphony Köln. Future engagements include her debut with the German Radio Orchestra Saarbrücken and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande.  

Strongly committed to contemporary works, Ms. Gomyo gave the North American premiere of Matthias Pintscher’s Violin Concerto No. 2, Mar'eh with the National Symphony Orchestra under the baton of the composer, as well as Pēteris Vasks's Vox Amoris with the Lapland Chamber Orchestra conducted by John Storgårds. In May 2018, she performed the world premiere of Samuel Adams’s Chamber Concerto—written for Ms. Gomyo and commissioned by the Chicago Symphony’s Music Now series for their twentieth anniversary—with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Esa-Pekka Salonen. 

In recital and chamber music Ms. Gomyo has performed in festivals throughout North America and Europe, including recent appearances at the Seattle Chamber Festival, Australian Festival of Chamber Music, with Jeremy Denk at his Milton Court/Barbican residency, and at her annual chamber music project with the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark. Future plans include a new piano trio collaboration with Olli Mustonen and Julian Steckel. She has also collaborated with tango legend Pablo Ziegler, bandonéon player and composer JP Jofre, and Finnish guitarist Ismo Eskelinen.

Ms. Gomyo participated as violinist, host, and narrator in a documentary film produced by NHK Japan about Antonio Stradivarius called The Mysteries of the Supreme Violin, which was broadcast worldwide on NHK WORLD. She plays on the 1703 “Aurora, ex-Foulis” Stradivarius violin, bought for her exclusive use by a private sponsor. 



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