David Ramadanoff is currently in his 38th season as Conductor and Music Director of Master Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra. Born in Cleveland, Ohio, he began his musical studies at the age of five on the piano and timpani. After completing a B.A. in History and Political Science at the College of Wooster in Ohio, he started his professional musical studies at Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio. A year later, he began his graduate studies in music theory and conducting at the Cleveland Institute of Music.
He continued his musical education as a master’s candidate at Temple University from 1968 to 1971 and as a doctoral candidate at the Juilliard School from 1972 until 1975, where he studied with Jean Morel and Sixten Ehrling. He also studied with Herbert Blomstedt and Otto Werner Mueller at the Aspen Music Festival, and with Seiji Ozawa, Leonard Bernstein, Eugen Jochum, Gunther Schuller and Joseph Silverstein at Tanglewood.
During his Juilliard years, he taught conducting, served as Music Director of the Olney Symphony of Philadelphia, and conducted in special seminars with Franco Ferrara and Pierre Boulez. In 1973, he was a prize winner in the Georg Solti conducting competition. He led his first opera in the New York premiere of William Walton’s “The Bear” for the American Opera Center, and was the recipient of a special grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to serve as Assistant Conductor to the Syracuse Symphony (1973-1974).
In 1975, Seiji Ozawa appointed Mr. Ramadanoff Assistant Conductor of the San Francisco Symphony. In 1976, he was appointed Music Director for all of San Francisco Symphony’s educational and community concerts. In 1977, under Edo de Waart he was made Associate Conductor. During his six years with the San Francisco Symphony, he regularly conducted subscription concerts.
In 1977, Mr. Ramadanoff was awarded the prize for the best performance of a modern Hungarian work at the International Hungarian Radio and Television Conducting competition. He was also awarded the Leopold Stokowski Conducting Award in 1981 as the Most Outstanding Young American Conductor and, under its auspices in 1982, he made his Carnegie Hall debut with the American Symphony. In 1983 he was appointed Music Director and Conductor of the Vallejo Symphony. During his tenure in that post (1983-2015) he guided the Vallejo Symphony in its transition from a community orchestra into one of the Bay Area’s finest small professional orchestras.
From 1984 to 1988, Mr. Ramadanoff was Director of Orchestral Activities at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, as well as Principal Conductor of its orchestra. In 1988, he was appointed Music Director of the Young Peoples Symphony Orchestra of Berkeley, an ensemble composed of musicians between the ages of 13 and 21. In 2000, he conducted his young musicians at Carnegie Hall.
Over the years, Mr. Ramadanoff has made guest appearances with orchestras throughout the country to critical acclaim. And here in California, his high standards and diverse repertoire have resulted in building high quality orchestras that continually gain in reputation.