Alexander Mishnaevski

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Alexander Mishnaevski is a Russian-born American violist, currently (2003) the principal violist of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Born in Moscow, he began violin lessons in his early childhood, when his father was principal violist with the local orchestra. He continued his musical studies at the Central Music School, and later applied to enter the Moscow Conservatory, but he went to the United States instead, in 1973, where he graduated from the Juilliard School of Music in New York. Later on in the decade, Isaac Stern suggested to Mishnaevski that he switch to viola, which Mishnaevski did. In 1978, he became a U.S. citizen.

From 1975 to 1985, Mishnaevski was principal violist of the Soviet Émigré Orchestra. During that time he was also principal violist of the New York Chamber Orchestra, the New York Pro Arte Ensemble, McGill Chamber Orchestra in Montréal, Quebec, Canada, and Orquesta Sinfonica de Xalapa in Mexico.

Presently, in addition to being principal violist for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (with which he has also appeared as a concerto soloist), Mishnaevski is also principal violist of the Windsor Symphony Orchestra, the Southfield Symphony Orchestra, the Grosse Pointe Symphony Orchestra and the Dearborn Symphony Orchestra.

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