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David Bernard ’87, ’88

Screen shot 2015 09 29 at 1.38.46 pm
Music Director, Park Avenue Chamber Symphony
Screen Shot 2015-09-29 at 1.38.46 PMDavid Bernard BA ’87, MM ’88, Music Director of the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony had most of his conducting training while a student at Stony Brook University. Now, he has been awarded First Prize in Orchestral Conducting in the American Prize competition for 2012.
David was selected as the winner from a very diverse group of conductors that hail from across the country. All conductors were judged on the basis of video recordings of live orchestral performances.
The American Prize is a series of non-profit national competitions providing cash awards, professional adjudication, and regional, national and international recognition for the best recorded performances of music by ensembles and individuals each year in the United States. The judges of The American Prize provided the following enthusiastic comments: “A first rate conductor–a stunning, lovely performance–masterly in shaping, phrasing, technique and expressivity. Insightful and inspired, Maestro Bernard possesses the vision and skill to build beautifully shaped interpretations of the major repertoire. A significant talent.”
“This is a terrific honor,” says David.
Since graduation, David has become a world traveler–he has performed in more than 20 countries on four continents and his performances have been heard in many of New York City’s most prestigious venues, such as Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’.
David also has an extensive catalog of recordings on iTunes, Naxos/ Classics Online, Amazon and Spotify, and his work has been profiled in Symphony Magazine, PlaybillArts.com, The Juilliard Journal, The New York Daily News, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.
Devoted to the music of our own time, David has presented world premières of scores by Bruce Adolphe and Chris Caswell and has also collaborated with distinguished soloists and artists including, Bart Feller, Whoopi Goldberg, and Judith Ingolfsson.
Throughout his professional career, David has served as Music Director of the Stony Brook University Orchestra, the Gilbert and Sullivan Light Opera Company of Long Island, and Theater Three.
David and the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony were also awarded First Prize in Orchestral Performance earlier in the week by the American Prize competition as well.
“These awards recognize the intense passion and commitment of musicians and ensembles that nourish and brighten our communities,” says David. “With The American Prize, these efforts are given a national focus.”
In November 2012, David travelled to Beijing at the invitation of the China Conservatory for a weeklong residency of chamber music coaching and conducting the China Conservatory Orchestra. The series of coaching, rehearsals and readings with the orchestra culminated in a performance of the student groups with the China Conservatory Orchestra led by Bernard.

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