A native of the Boston area, violinist Gabriel Lefkowitz is the Concertmaster of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and the Louisville Orchestra. A versatile musician of the 21st century, Gabriel is also a conductor and a composer for films and video games.
During the 2016-2017 season, Gabriel will conclude his tenure with the Knoxville Symphony, a position he has held since 2011 at the age of 23. Highlights of the KSO season include a performance of the Brahms Violin Concerto and three recitals at the Knoxville Museum of Art as part of the KSO’s highly successful concert series, Gabriel Lefkowitz & Friends. Guest engagements this season include performances of Mozart's Violin Concerto No. 5 with the Oak Ridge Symphony, and Philip Glass' Violin Concerto No. 1 with the Ocala Symphony.
Gabriel holds a Bachelor’s degree from Columbia University, where he graduated magna cum laude in three years, having studied music and economics. In May of 2010, he earned a Masters in Violin Performance at The Juilliard School where he studied with Joel Smirnoff and Masao Kawasaki.
In July of 2004, at age 16, Gabriel was asked to give a solo performance at the Democratic National Convention’s opening night at the Fleet Center in Boston. His original rendition of “Amazing Grace” was seen live by millions around the world and led to an appearance on the CNN Morning Show, and a special performance for former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney at the State House in Boston.
He has also performed with several popular rock and indie bands in New York, including Vampire Weekend, with whom he performed in February 2010 on Saturday Night Live. Gabriel was a violinist on the 2010 international Star Wars: In Concert! summer tour.
An active symphonic conductor, Gabriel made his conducting debut with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra during the 2015-2016 season in the form of several light classical & pops “runout” performances at venues throughout Knoxville and East Tennessee. Gabriel served as Music Director of the Oak Ridge Community Orchestra during the 2014-2015 season, and has worked extensively with youth ensembles including the Knoxville Symphony Youth Orchestra, the Juilliard Pre-College Orchestra, and the Boston Youth Symphony.
In addition to his activities as a violinist and conductor, Gabriel is a composer for films and video games. In the summer of 2010, he was one of only five composers invited to study composition at the Aspen Music Festival’s prestigious Film Scoring Program where he composed electronic and orchestral pieces to picture. His current compositional focus is scoring video games, including the upcoming release Pop-Up Dungeon. His orchestral music has been performed by the Knoxville and Owensboro Symphony Orchestras as well as the Dubuque Festival Orchestra.