Violist Antoine Tamestit is among Europe's most recognizable players of his instrument. He is especially noted for his wide chamber music repertory, stretching from the Baroque to contemporary music.
Tamestit was born in Paris on July 11, 1979. He studied at the Conservatoire de Paris in the class of Jean Sulem and went on for further training in chamber music at Yale University with Jesse Levine and the Tokyo String Quartet and in solo music with violist Tabea Zimmermann. Several major competition wins between 2000 and 2004, including those at the Maurice Vieux International Viola Competition, the William Primrose International Viola Competition, and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions helped launch Tamestit's career. From 2004 to 2006, he was a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist, and in 2006, he received the coveted Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award. Tamestit's concert hall appearances have taken him to leading world venues, including the Musikverein in Vienna, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, and Carnegie Hall in New York. He has performed with the likes of the London Symphony Orchestra, the Vienna Philharmonic, and the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, playing contemporary works, including several world premieres in addition to standards of the viola repertory, such as Berlioz's Harold in Italy and Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante for violin and viola, K. 364. Tamestit is perhaps even more familiar as a chamber music player. He has appeared at major festivals such as those in Davos and Lucerne, Switzerland, and his partners have included pianist Nicholas Angelic, violinist Gidon Kremer, and the violin-and-cello duo of Gautier and Renaud Capuçon. Tamestit is a member of the Zimmermann Trio.
Tamestit has recorded for Harmonia Mundi, BIS, Naïve, and a variety of other labels. He is the dedicatee of a viola concerto by Jörg Widmann, which he premiered in 2015 with the Orchestre de Paris and recorded in 2018 for Harmonia Mundi with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra under Daniel Harding. On his 2021 album of Brahms' viola sonatas, he was joined by pianist Cédric Tiberghien. Tamestit taught from 2007 to 2013 at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz in Cologne, and since then, he has been on the faculty at the Conservatoire de Paris.
© James Manheim /TiVo