Chair of Strings, Distinguished Artist-in-Residence, Violin
Emanuel Borok, Concertmaster of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra from 1985 to 2010, has had a distinguished career as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral leader. Before coming to Dallas, Borok served for 11 seasons as Associate Concertmaster of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Concertmaster of the Boston Pops Orchestra.
Born and trained in the Soviet Union, Borok received his early musical instruction at the renowned Darzinya Music School in Riga, Latvia, and the Gnessin School of Music in Moscow. In 1964 he became prizewinner of the most important national violin competition in the former Soviet Union. In 1971, he won the position of Co-Concertmaster in the Moscow Philharmonic.
Since emigrating to the West in 1973, Borok has made many solo appearances in Israel, Canada, France, Italy, Norway, Germany, Venezuela, Mexico, Switzerland, Holland and throughout the United States (including Carnegie Hall). His solo appearances have included the Bach Double Concerto with Yehudi Menuhin, Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante with Pinchas Zukerman and Brahms’s Double Concerto with Janos Starker; concerto and chamber music appearances at notable festivals such as the La Jolla Festival of the Arts in La Jolla, Calif.; Montecito International Music Festival, Mentecito, Calif.; Summit Music Festival in Purchase, N.Y.; Settimane Musicale Senese in Siena, Italy; Tuscan Sun Festival in Cortona, Italy; Gstaad Switzerland and others. His chamber music partners have included such distinguished artists as Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman, Shlomo Mintz, Lynn Harrell, Emanuel Ax, Yefim Bronfman, Christopher Hogwood, Joshua Bell, Ralph Kirshbaum, Cho-Liang Lin, Sarah Chang and Paul Neubauer as well as Principals of Berlin Philharmonic Hansjorg Schellenberger and Daniel Damiano. Borok was also featured in the Distinguished Artists Recital Series at the 92nd Street Y in New York.
In 1999, Borok was part of the Grammy-nominated CD Voces Americanas with Dallas-based new music ensemble Voices of Change. He also recorded the Shostakovich Violin Sonata with Tatiana Yampolsky (which received a four-star rating from the Penguin Cassette Guide), the solo part of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons with musicians from the Boston Symphony (named “Best of the Month” by Stereo Review magazine), and Beethoven’s Archduke Trio with pianist Claude Frank and cellist Leslie Parnas (honored by Ovation magazine as the record of the year).
Borok’s most recent recordings include A Road Less Traveled and Songs for a Lonely Heart, with seldom-performed concertos by Joseph Haydn and romantic pieces for violin, released to critical acclaim on the Eroica label. He has published a book of original cadenzas for all five Mozart Violin Concertos with Theodore Presser Co.
In addition to his highly active performing life, Borok has established himself as an internationally recognized teacher having taught at the Tanglewood Music Center; the Academia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, Italy; the Menuhin Festival in Gstaad, Switzerland; Royal Conservatory and Academy of Music in London; Conservatoire de Paris; Tchaikovsky Conservatory of Moscow; and the Academy of Music in Prague. In the summer of 2005 he was invited to teach at the famous Verbier Festival in Switzerland.
Borok’s violin is a 400-year-old Brothers Amati violin, made in 1608 in Cremona, Italy, home to such famous violin makers as Amati, Guarneri and Stradivarius. In 2009, on the occasion of the violin’s 400th “birthday,” Borok traveled with his violin to Cremona and presented a concert for the people of the city, all of which was captured in the documentary A Cremona con Amore, available on Amazon.com.
In June 2010 Borok was invited to perform at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam with the Radio Philharmonic orchestra during the Holland Festival under the direction of Jaap van Zweden. The occasion featured a violin concerto written by Alexander Raskatov and dedicated to Mr. Borok’s 1608 Brothers Amati violin.
Borok retired from the orchestra life in 2010 and is currently Distinguished Artist-In-Residence, Violin at the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University, where he combines his teaching with performing, conducting master classes and adjudicating competitions.