Nathan Giem, Violin
Violinist Nathan Giem has performed as a soloist, chamber musician and concertmaster in halls across Europe, Japan and the United States.
Mr. Giem is based in Budapest, Hungary, where he serves as first concertmaster for the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of János Kovács and Tamás Vásáry. Additionally, Nathan leads the Budapest Symphony Orchestra and Solti Chamber Orchestra. In October 2017, members of the Radio Orchestra and the Hungarian Radio Association awarded Mr. Giem the Dohnányi Prize as their Musician of the Year.
Formerly concertmaster for the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, Mr. Giem is in demand as a guest leader. As leader of the Hungarian Symphony Orchestra, Nathan performed with oboist Albrecht Meyer in the opening concert of the 2017 Engadin Festival in Switzerland, under the direction of Maestro Jan Schultz. Other ensembles he has served as guest concertmaster for include the Columbus (Ohio) Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Maestro Rossen Milanov, the Los Angeles Camerata Orchestra and the Accademia Gustav Mahler Festival Orchestra in Potenza, Italy, with which he also performed Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante as violin soloist with violist Wolfram Christ.
As a child, Nathan received musical instruction from Mehli Mehta, father of acclaimed conductor Zubin Mehta. At the age of fourteen, Nathan was accepted as an undergraduate student at Indiana University, where he continued his violin studies with Franco Gulli. Through the years his teachers have included Nelli Shkolnikova, Henryk Kowalski, Federico Agostini, and Alexander Kerr. In addition Nathan has participated in masterclasses and private lessons with Dénes Kovács, Eszter Perenyi, Ruggiero Ricci, Pinchas Zukerman and members of the Orion Quartet.
In 2005, Nathan was selected as a Fulbright Scholar to the Netherlands in Orchestral Leadership. He has studied at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, as well as privately in Budapest, Hungary. Mr. Giem holds a Masters Degree and an Artist Diploma from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where he also taught violin as an Associate Instructor.
As first violinist of the Kuttner Quartet, Mr. Giem has performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. He has also performed in Carnegie’s Zankel Hall as a member of the Bloomington, Indiana-based Kolot Ensemble, and has participated in the Open Chamber Music Festival in Prussia Cove, Cornwall, UK. In the summers, Nathan enjoys coaching chamber music at the Indiana University String Academy, and participating in the Violin Society of America’s Annual Oberlin Acoustics Workshop, where he is Music Director.
A versatile recording artist, Mr. Giem has featured as violin soloist in several premiere recordings of works by Grammy-winning composer Augusta Read Thomas, including a Nimbus Label recording of Thomas’s Astral Canticle, a concerto for flute, violin and orchestra. Nathan was also a participant in a recorded collection of Thomas’s works entitled Of Being Is A Bird, which was recently selected for the BBC’s Music Magazine Chamber Choice Award.
In addition to his performing career, Nathan has an active interest in conducting. He served as Music Director for the Illini Strings Orchestra at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he completed his conducting studies under the guidance of Donald Schleicher. Previously, Nathan served as Director of Orchestras at the Youth Performing Arts School (YPAS) in Louisville, Kentucky. His hobbies include history, violin making, and the study of languages. Mr. Giem is married to fellow musician and violinist Beatrix Soros and enjoys spending time together with their four-year-old daughter, Esther.