Dr. Benjamin Rush Chair
Violinist David Kim was named concertmaster of The Philadelphia Orchestra in 1999. Born in Carbondale, Illinois, in 1963, he started playing the violin at the age of three, began studies with the famed pedagogue Dorothy DeLay at the age of eight, and later received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Juilliard School.
Mr. Kim’s 2023–24 season begins with appearances with The Philadelphia Orchestra in Bach’s Double Violin Concerto (with Principal Second Violin Kimberly Fisher) at Longwood Gardens as well as the Tchaikovsky Concerto under the baton of Music and Artistic Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin on tour in North Carolina. Winter and spring months include multiple Philadelphia Orchestra performances of the Eight Seasons of Vivaldi and Piazzolla (the former’s The Four Seasons and the latter’s The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires). Mr. Kim’s master class schedule sees him visit the Curtis Institute of Music, Dartmouth College, Georgetown University, and the Manhattan School of Music, among others, and he gives concerto and recital appearances across the United States. Summer festival visits include Festival Napa Valley and Music in the Vineyards, also in Napa. He also continues to appear as concertmaster of the nine-time Emmy Award–winning All-Star Orchestra on PBS stations across the US and online at the Khan Academy. Mr. Kim’s first book, The Audition Method for Violin, was published by GIA Publications and released in 2022. This long-awaited collection of standard orchestral excerpts walks the reader through each work with his suggestions on execution, audition strategy, bowings, and fingerings.
Mr. Kim is a frequent touring guest of famed modern hymn writers Keith and Kristyn Getty at venues such as the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and Carnegie Hall. Mr. Kim serves as distinguished artist at the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia. He frequently serves as an adjudicator at international violin competitions such as the Menuhin and Sarasate.
Mr. Kim has been awarded honorary doctorates from Eastern University in suburban Philadelphia, the University of Rhode Island, and Dickinson College. His instruments are a J.B. Guadagnini from Milan, ca. 1757, on loan from The Philadelphia Orchestra, and a Francesco Gofriller, ca. 1735. He exclusively performs on and endorses Larsen Strings from Denmark. Mr. Kim resides in a Philadelphia suburb with his wife, Jane, and daughters, Natalie and Maggie. He is an avid golfer and outdoorsman.
Photo by Allie Skylar Photography