Born in Izmir, one of today’s concert violinist representatives of the Andre Gertler violin school, Tuncay Yılmaz is an internationally successful virtuoso. The first musician in his family, Yılmaz began his education in Izmir, later continuing at the Ankara State Conservatoire and graduating first in his class. While still a student, he gave his first concert as a soloist, performing the Turkish premiere of Hindemith’s Violin Concerto with the Presidential Symphony Orchestra. He gave his first recital with Fazil Say. He was awarded the German State Scholarship DAAD and continued his studies in the soloist classes at Freiburg and Saarland Music Universities, graduating with the titles of “Efficiency in Art” and “Soloist”, the highest German diplomas.
During his education, Tuncay Yılmaz was trained by notable professors such as Nicolai, Eralp, Marschner and Epstein. He won the prize for the best performance of Schumann at Louis Spohr Violin Competition and Mozart Award from Saarland University for his performance of Mozart’s 5th Violin Concerto during the international Mozart commemoration year. He was also a finalist at Tibor Varga Competition in Switzerland and Berlin Mendelssohn Competition.
Yılmaz has performed with many major orchestras including Salzburg Mozarteum, Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra, Sofia Phiharmonic Orchestra, Moscow Symphony Orchestra, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, Moscow Musica Viva Chamber Orchestra, Saarland Radio Symphony Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra, West Virginia Symphony and all the State Symphony Orchestras of Turkey. He has given numerous recitals together with well-known musicians such as Idil Biret, Emre Elivar, Gustav Rivinius, Alexander Rudin, Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt, Jiri Barta, Ludmil Angelov, Wolfram Schmitt Leonardy and Tedi Papavrami. Accompanied by his regular pianist Robert Markham he has performed in locations and concert halls around the world including Ankara, Berlin, Istanbul, Monte Carlo (Salle Garnier), Frankfurt, London, Cologne, Abu Dhabi, Valencia, Toledo, Boston, Chicago and New York (Carnegie Hall). Yılmaz, who has appeared on various radio and TV programs, was described as a “young prince of violinists” by Nice Matin in France, while Boston Globe called him a “sophisticated concert violinist”. Yılmaz’s repertoire includes major concertos such as Bartok, Brahms, Beethoven, Berg, Erkin, Mendelssohn, Bruch, Wienawski and Mozart, as well as many sonatas for violin and piano. His first CD, including Franck and Elgar Sonatas, was recorded in New York and released in 1999. The second, “Mozart 2006” was a live recording of a performance under Rudin on the occasion of Mozart’s 250th anniversary celebrations. His most recent CD, “Rosepage”, together with pianist Markham, has recently been released.
Yılmaz has twice taken part in the International Toledo Music Festival and also Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir International Festivals. He has performed the Brahms Double Concerto in Istanbul together with Gustav Rivinius, first prize winner in the Moscow Tchaikovsky Competition. He performed two concertos at the opening of the 22nd Ankara Music Festival. During the Mozart anniversary year, 2006, he was incited by Rudin to Moscow to perform for the first time, playing Mozart’s violin concerto. At the end of the same year, he performed Mozart in Ankara with the Presidential Symphony Orchestra, in memory of Atatürk. Tuncay Yılmaz, who continues his successful career, has been a State Soloist of the Turkish Ministry of Culture since 1996. He initiated the “International Violin Masterclass of the Izmir Foundation for Culture, Arts and Education”. He is a violin virtuoso and coordinator of the Arkas Trio. Tuncay Yılmaz performs on a 1731-Venedig, Petrus Paulus Devitor ‘Red Diamond’ violin.