Photo by Tatiana Daubek
Originally from Ukraine, violist Alexander Vavilov has established himself as an active and versatile voice in the Boston area and beyond. In addition to regular chamber and orchestral appearances at top venues, such as the Boston Symphony Hall, Carnegie Hall, and Jordan Hall, Alexander can be most frequently heard playing chamber music with Sheffield Chamber Players, a group he co-founded in 2014 and helped grow into a vibrant and unique organization.
Alexander performs regularly with such groups as the Grammy Award winning Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Odyssey Opera, Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra and Portland Symphony Orchestra. Other orchestra and chamber experience includes Boston Ballet, Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, Ensemble/Parallax, Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, principal of Atlantic Symphony, and associate principal of Plymouth Symphony. He makes regular appearances at the various concert series in the New England area as a chamber and solo musician, as well as in a duo with his wife, pianist Olga Talroze. Festival and concert series appearances include Tanglewood Music Center, Monadnock Music, Sarasota Music Festival, National Sawdust, Meadowmount Sumer School of Music, Caspian Monday Music, Manchester Summer Chamber Music, Bowdoin Summer Music Camp, Longy Sound Fest and others. Alexander collaborated in the chamber music setting with prominent artists such as the Borromeo Quartet, James Buswell, Barbara Westphal, Ronald Leonard, Rhonda Rider and Lynn Chang.
Complementing his rigorous classical training with a healthy dose of constructive chaos, Alexander has independently honed his skill as improvisor. As such he performs regularly at venues that include the prestigious Regatta Bar and with various groups, including Musaner, an Armenian jazz ensemble, and Sonare, an experimental folk jazz ensemble he co-founded in 2021.
Taking the improvisational side of his musical voice even further, in 2021 Alexander started actively pursuing collaboration possibilities with visual artists. Some of these collaborations resulted in launching of Soundscape Visions, an experimental inter-disciplinary project exploring the intersection between visual arts and music, most often taking the form of improvised soundscapes performed live to an image series or to a visual artist working in real time.
Alexander’s awards include a 2009 Borromeo Guest Artist award, 2003 First Prize in the Massachusetts ASTA string players’ competition. He subsequently advanced to national semifinals and was selected to participate in the national finals. Other achievements include being selected as a finalist in 2007 Atlantic Symphony Orchestra concerto competition, Diplomas in the Ukrainian National Viola competition in Lviv in 1999 and the New Names of Ukraine competition in Kyiv in 2000. Recorded for labels such as Carl Fischer and BMOP/sound.
Alexander’s ample and diverse performance experience fuels his passion for passing on the knowledge. A dedicated pedagogue, Alexander currently maintains a sizeable studio at the Winchester Community Music School, where he was on faculty since 2009, as well as a smaller private studio. Additionally, during the summer Alexander loves coaching chamber music at the Summer Chamber Music Festival at WCMS. In the past, he has also held faculty positions at Indian Hill Music School and the Point Counterpoint Music Camp.
Alexander attended Kyiv Glier College of Music, The Boston Conservatory, and the New England Conservatory. His mentors include Kim Kashkashian, Patricia McCarty, Joseph Silverstein, James Buswell, Roger Tapping, Mark Sokol, Arturo Delmoni, James Dunham, Robert Vernon, Rostislav Denisiuk, Andrij Purzhash, and others.
Currently Alexander is performing on a majestic 2012 Thomas Bertrand viola.
In his free time Alexander enjoys perfecting his skill as an inline skater and a sourdough baker, as well as a simple walk by the oceanside. He indulges in the latter a lot more frequently since 2021, when he moved to Lynn with his wife and their adorable orange tabby Julie.