Martin Chalifour. Violinist, born at Montreal 15 June 1961; Premier prix violin, Conservatoire de Musique de Montréal (CMM) 1979, graduate (Curtis) 1984.
He began violin at the age of 4 with the Suzuki method, and studied in Montréal at l'École Vincent d'Indy (1968-72), and at the CMM (1973-79) with Sonia Jelinkova and Taras Gabora. He pursued his studies in the USA at the Curtis Institute of Music (Philadelphia) 1981-84 with Jascha Brodsky and David Cerone, and he studied with Ivan Galamian at Meadowmount.
In 1980 Chalifour won the Du Maurier Search for the Stars competition. His 1981 first prize at the Canadian Music Competition resulted in a concert 18 Oct 1981 at the St Lawrence Centre's Town Hall (now the Jane Mallet Theatre) in a programme showcasing new Canadian talent.
In June 1986, he was the only Canadian to reach the second round in the International Tchaikovsky Competition, earning a certificate of honour. In 1987, he was a prizewinner in the Montréal International Competition.
He has since performed as soloist with the OSM, the OSQ, the Vancouver Symphony, the Queensland Symphony (Australia), and with orchestras in Hong Kong, New Zealand and elsewhere with such conductors as Gustavo Dudamel , Esa-Pekka Salonin, Charles Dutoit, Pierre Boulez, Bramwell Tovey, Neville Marriner, and Robert Shaw.
Chalifour began his orchestral career as Associate Concertmaster of the Atlanta Symphony (USA), 1984-90. He then joined the Cleveland Orchestra, initially as acting Associate Concertmaster (1989-90); then Associate Concertmaster (1990-95), although due to the ill health of then concertmaster Daniel Majeske, he frequently performed the full duties of concertmaster. He was Acting Concertmaster (1993-95).
In 1995 Chalifour became Principal Concertmaster of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he has retained in 2012.
Chamber Musician and Teacher
Chalifour has remained active as a chamber musician and teacher. He founded the Cleveland Orchestra Piano Trio, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic Piano Trio and has appeared at festivals as Spoleto and Mainly Mozart (USA) and in Canada at the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival.
His teaching has included at the Cleveland Institute, as Adjunct Professor at the University of Southern California's Thornton School of Music, as well as master classes and workshops.
In 2010 he began playing on the Ex Earl of Plymouth Ex Kreisler Stradivarius (1711) one of three Strad instruments owned by the LA Philharmonic. He has recorded on the Yarlung label in works by Esa- Pekka Salonin, Steven Stucky, Witold Lutoslawski , and Mozart.