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ROBERT deMAINE is an American virtuoso cellist who has been hailed by The New York Times as "an artist who makes one hang on every note.” He has distinguished himself as one of the finest and most versatile instrumentalists of his generation, performing to critical acclaim as soloist, recitalist, orchestral principal, recording artist, and chamber musician. In 2012 he was invited to join the Los Angeles Philharmonic as principal cello.
DeMaine has appeared on the stages of Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, Teatro Colón, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, the Berlin Philharmonie, Vienna Konzerthaus, and Moscow's Tchaikovsky Hall, among others. He was the first cellist ever to win San Francisco's prestigious Irving M. Klein International Competition for Strings. The recipient of a career grant from the Helen M. Saunders Foundation, deMaine's distinctions have included first prizes and awards from numerous competitions. His principal teachers include Leonard Rose, Stephen Kates, Steven Doane, Paul Katz, Ronald Leonard, and Aldo Parisot, among others. Master classes and additional studies were undertaken with Bernard Greenhouse, János Starker, Boris Pergamenschikow, Felix Galimir, and Jerome Lowenthal.
Robert deMaine’s frequent musical collaborators include such distinguished colleagues as violinists James Ehnes, Hilary Hahn, Gil Shaham, Pamela Frank, Ani and Ida Kavafian, Joseph Silverstein, and Felix Galimir, pianists Emanuel Ax, Andre Watts, Jeffrey Kahane, Anton Kuerti, Anne-Marie McDermott, Marc-André Hamelin, Jeremy Denk, Orion Weiss, Valentina Lisitsa, and Yefim Bronfman, conductors Gustavo Dudamel, John Williams, Neeme Järvi, Leonard Slatkin, Dennis Russell Davies, Peter Oundjian, Andrew Litton, Thomas Wilkins, Nicholas McGegan, Julian Kuerti, JoAnn Falletta, and James Gaffigan, among many others. As a chamber musician deMaine has been performed at the world’s leading music festivals, including Aspen, Heidelberg, Montréal, Chautauqua, Bargemusic, Skaneateles, Napa's Music in the Vineyards, Cabrillo, Breckenridge, Meadowmount, and the Marlboro Music Festival, also performing with Music from Marlboro in New York and Washington, D.C. He has collaborated with the legendary Beaux Arts Trio as well as the Emerson, Juilliard, Kronos, Cleveland, American, Mendelssohn, Parisii, Chiara, Amernet, and Pacifica string quartets. DeMaine is also a member of the Ehnes Quartet (with violinists James Ehnes, Amy Schwartz Moretti, and violist Richard O'Neill) and the Dicterow-deMaine-Biegel Trio. A passionately committed teacher, deMaine has given master classes and has taught at schools and universities throughout North and South America and Europe. His pupils are laureates of major solo and chamber music competitions and can also be found in chamber ensembles and symphony orchestras throughout the world.
Robert deMaine has recorded for Naxos, Chandos, Dorian/Sono Luminus, Onyx, CBC, Elysium, and Capstone and has been featured on the BBC, PBS, NPR's Performance Today, the Canadian Broadcasting Company, France Musique, and RAI, among others.
As a composer deMaine has written several works for the cello, including a set of twelve Études-Caprices. Among the many works specially composed for him are Summer Verses for Violin and Cello by Christopher Theofanidis. Other composers whose works have either been dedicated to or premiered by Robert deMaine include Kenneth Fuchs, Jeffrey Mumford, and Joel Eric Suben.
A fourth-generation string player, Robert deMaine was introduced to the cello at the age of four by his mother and sister, both accomplished cellists. At a young age deMaine came to the attention of famed cellists Pierre Fournier and Leonard Rose, both of whom encouraged his continued studies. Sponsorship allowed him to study with Rose in the pre-college division of The Juilliard School, after which he attended Meadowmount, the Eastman School of Music, the Piatigorsky Seminar in Los Angeles, Music Academy of the West, the Marlboro School and Festival, and Yale University on full-tuition fellowships. Additional studies were undertaken at the University of Southern California and the Kronberg Academy in Germany.
Before joining the Los Angeles Philharmonic as principal cello in 2012, deMaine served as the James C. Gordon Principal Cello of the Detroit Symphony for over a decade. He has previously served as principal cello of the Hartford Symphony, New York String Orchestra, and Connecticut Opera and has been guest principal cello of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Toronto Symphony, and the Bergen Philharmonic in Norway.
Robert deMaine makes his home in Southern California with his wife, Elizabeth, and two children, Paul, and Annette. He is a Thomastik-Infeld Artist and performs on an immaculately preserved Venetian cello made in 1748 by Domenico Busan. A knowledgeable and enthusiastic collector of cellos, deMaine’s other instruments include cellos by Stradivari, Gagliano, and Gragnani, as well as a Vuillaume (courtesy of the Cecilia Benner Trust) and a Guarneri (on loan from the LA Philharmonic). In August 2014, deMaine made his Los Angeles Philharmonic concerto debut in a performance of Brahms’ Double Concerto alongside violinist Alina Pogostkina. His recording of the John Williams Cello Concerto (Detroit Symphony, Leonard Slatkin conducting) will be released by Naxos in fall 2015.
Robert deMaine is represented as a solo artist by McAlister Arts LLC. Learn more at robertdemaine.com.