Most musicians I know would be content playing in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra or the Berlin Philharmonic on a regular basis. Some might even have the privilege of being asked to solo with professional orchestras across the country. Apparently for Karina Canellakis, that was not enough. Following in her father’s footsteps, she decided to pursue conducting at The Julliard School. She received her Master’s in orchestral conducting and she won 2013 Schiff Conducting Award for outstanding achievement in orchestral conducting, the American Conductors Award, Bruno Walter Memorial Scholarship and the Isidore Komanoff Award. With her academic success, she has now moved to the Dallas Symphony Orchestra as the new Assistant Conductor this season where she continues to impress the musical community. Even at the last minute.
Karina Canellakis was called into action in the middle of the night on October 3, 2014. Jaap van Zweden, the Music Director of the DSO, was experiencing strong shoulder pains while preparing the orchestra for a weekend of concerts. Jaap van Zweden conducted both concerts both Thursday and Friday night, but the pain was too much and after seeing a doctor, he needed to recover. It was in this moment in which the spotlight moved to Canellakis. With Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 8 and Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 14, Canellakis had her work cut out for her. As the Dallas Morning News stated, “she rose spectacularly to the challenge Saturday night, leading with great clarity and expressivity” and listed this performance as one of the Top 10 classical music performances of 2014. Her thorough preparation and excellent execution earned her a standing ovation and thunderous feet shuffles from the orchestra.
The Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra would like to congratulate Karina on her triumph upon the podium in Dallas and cannot wait to begin preparing for a weekend of music for LACO’s 4th concert of the orchestral series on January 24th and 25th. She will display both her talent on solo violin and conducting. The program will include Vivaldi’s Violin Concerto in E-flat major and Peteris Vasks’ Lonely Angel and following that, she will lead the orchestra through John Adams’ Shaker Loops and Schubert’s Symphony No. 5 in B-flat major in LACO’s 4th concert of the orchestral series. Best of luck and welcome Ms. Canellakis!