Associate Professor - Violin and Viola
Room 226, Swope Music Building
M.M., Indiana University
B.M., The Juilliard School
Weekly Master Classes are giving students an increased awareness of performing and teaching. The many opportunities for performing and teaching is making all students advance at a very fast rate. The newly started Baroque ensemble that uses period bows and gut strings is putting styles of all periods in perspective. Having all new students mentored by older students, is resulting in students becoming aclaimed faster. There is a great energy in the string studios which is social as well as professional.
To teach students to really communicate with their music whether teaching or performing. I want my students to love what they do and to share that with others. My job is to raise the level of playing and knowledge so that the communication becomes better and better.
Sylvia Ahramjian is acclaimed for her spirited performances and innovative recital programs. She has appeared as soloist with the Delaware, Newark, Kennett, Dover, and Lancaster Symphonies. A frequent performer in Romania she has performed with the Bucharest Sinfonia, the Ploiesti Philharmonic and with orchestras in Bacau, and Rimnicu-Vilcea. Together with her husband, cellist Ovidiu Marinescu, she has presented duo recitals in Rome and Venice, Italy. Important venues for chamber music have included the Moscow Conservatory in Russia, the Holywell Music Room in Oxford, and the Romanian Embassies in Venice, Rome, London and Washington. In 2002 she was part of a delegation from West Chester University that visited China where she offered several lecture-recitals on American Music at Macau University and the Shanghai Teachers University, as well as a Master Class to students at the Shanghai University. Sylvia Ahramjian was invited to return to China where she presented Master Classes and performances at both China Conservatory in Beijing and Ghoizhou University. She has performed with the Magie Barocche International Festival at several venues in Italy and was a guest artist with Colloquy, a contemporary chamber ensemble, at St. Martin within Ludgate Church in London.
Interested in contemporary music, she has performed many solo works for violin by contemporary composers that have included Andrea Clearfield, John Corrigliano, Hilary Tan, Robert Maggio, and Steven Gerber. She is also interested in contemporary music for viola having performed solo music by Mark Hagerty and Michael Kureck.
She was concertmaster of the Lancaster Symphony in Pennsylvania for over 20 years and Associate Concertmaster of the Delaware Symphony for 18 years. Sylvia Ahramjian has performed viola on the Upper Hudson Concert Series, the Adirondack Ensemble Series, the Luzerne Music Center Concert Series, and the Camerata Philadelphia Series.
Sylvia Ahramjian is currently professor of violin and viola at West Chester University in Pennsylvania, where she is an active performer on both violin and viola. She was adjunct professor of violin and viola at Temple University in Philadelphia. She was an artist faculty member for many years at the Wilmington Music School, now the Music School of Delaware. She founded the Chamber Music Workshop there as well as the "String Club" .She has been on the faculty at summer festivals including the Governor's School for the Arts in Pennsylvania (2006-2008), the International Suzuki Festival in Puerto Rico (2009), the Blue Mountain Festival, the Adirondack Music Camp, the Casals Festival in Puerto Rico (1995-96), and at the International Festival in Brasov, Romania (2002-2004), the Goppisberg Festival in Switzerland (1996-97) and the Luzerne Music Center (1983-1995) where she was head of string chamber music.
Her former students have gone on to study at Juilliard School, the Curtis Institute, the Moscow Conservatory, the Royal Academy in London, Oberlin Conservatory, the Eastman School of Music, and the University of Southern California among others. She has had two national winners in violin at the MTNA national competition and the Appassionata String Quartet that she coached, won the Eastern Division of the same competition. In the 2007 MTNA competition she had three state winners - junior, high school and college divisions. Her students have been soloists as winners of competitions with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Delaware Symphony, the Kennett Symphony, the Warminster Symphony, the Lansdale Symphony, the Bucks County Symphony, the Delaware County Symphony and the Newark Symphony. . Her Students have been concertmaster of the Pennsylvania All State Orchestra, the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, the Delaware All State Orchestra, and the MENC National Orchestra.
Her former students are members of the Philadelphia Orchestra (violin) and the Dallas Fort Worth Orchestras (viola). Other achievements of former students include making the finals for the assistant principal position (viola) in the National Symphony, being a member of the famed Lark Quartet, which won the Namburg Competition, member of the Memphis Symphony, member of the Opera Orchestra in Houston, Concertmaster of the San Jose Symphony, Concertmaster of the Maryland Symphony, and member of Tempesta di Mare in Philadelphia. They have held teaching positions at the Colburn School in Los Angles and Ithaca College, Stanford University, as well as many school districts in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, South Carolina and Nevada. One was featured in interview on the movie "The Red Violin".
Together with Ovidiu Marinescu, cello and Carl Cranmer, piano, she performs with Trio Casals which is in residence at West Chester University. In 2008-2009 they performed the Beethoven Triple Concerto with the Helena (Montana) and Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphonies. They perform regularly on chamber music series throughout the East Coast.
Ms. Ahramjian is a graduate of the Juilliard School where she was a scholarship student, working with Ivan Galamian and Margaret Pardee. She received her Master of Music degree from Indiana University, studying with Josef Gingold, and did post-graduate study with Paul Rolland at the University of Illinois finishing all course work for a DMA.
Currently she is pursuing studies in Baroque violin playing and plans several concerts with her new baroque instrument in the spring of 2011. She directs the newly formed Baroque String Ensemble at West Chester University. This group uses period bows and gut strings and is dedicated to authentic style performances. She presented a paper in Costa Rica last year with Russian professor Alice Speh on what music can do for the study of foreign language and what language can do for teaching music.
Sylvia Ahramjian was the Concertmaster of the Lancaster Symphony for over 20 years. An avid chamber musician, she is a member of Trio Casals, and many other chamber groups in the Philadelphia area. She has recorded the Khachaturian Trio on Golden Crest Records. She has a recording "Crossroads", with pianist Carl Cranmer. Her viola CD "Ballade" will be released in September 2010.