Recipient of the Gold Medal at the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition (Moscow, 2011).
Narek Hakhnazaryan was propelled onto the international classical music scene in 2011 when, at the age of twenty-two, he won the Cello First Prize and Gold Medal at the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition, since which time he has become firmly established as one of the finest cellists of his generation. He has received critical press acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic, with the Daily Telegraph describing his playing as “a marvel of musicality and technique combined” and the Washington Post describing him as “a seasoned phenomenon”.
Hakhnazaryan has played with some of the world’s finest ensembles including the London Symphony, the Chicago Symphony, the Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Seoul Philharmonic, the Toronto Symphony, the Mariinsky Orchestra, the Filarmonica della Scala in Milan and the Orchestre National de Toulouse under such conductors such as Gergiev, Koopman, van Zweden, Sokhiev, Neeme Järvi, Spivakov, Pletnev, Robertson and Bělohlávek. In chamber and duo recitals he has performed at such venues as the Salle Pleyel (Paris), Wigmore Hall (London), the Berlin Konzerthaus, the Vienna Konzerthaus, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Oji Hall (Tokyo), Zankel Hall (Carnegie Hall, New York) and Jordan Hall (Boston) as well as at the Tivoli, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Ravinia, Mikkeli, City of London and Verbier Festivals.
Narek Hakhnazaryan was born in Yerevan, Armenia, into a family of musicians: his father is a violinist and his mother a pianist. Hakhnazaryan’s early studies were at the Sayat-Nova School of Music in Yerevan under Zareh Sarkisyan and subsequently at the Moscow Conservatoire under Alexei Seleznyov, and he also had the honour of being mentored by the late Mstislav Rostropovich. He has received scholarships from the Rostropovich Foundation and the Russian Performing Arts Fund, while his awards include First Prize at the 2006 Aram Khachaturian International Competition in Armenia and First Place at the 2006 Johansen International Competition for Young String Players. As First Prize winner at the 2008 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, Hakhnazaryan made his debut at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall and in Washington. In 2011 he received an Artist Diploma from the New England Conservatory of Music where he studied under Lawrence Lesser.