The French violist, Antoine Tamestit, began his music studies in Paris; then went on to study with Jesse Levine at Yale Universtiy and with Tabea Zimmermann. He was the recipient of several coveted prizes which launched his career and gave him exposure in the USA and in Europe - the William Primrose Competition and the first prize at the Young Concert Artists (YCA) International Auditions, BBC Radio 3's New Generation Artists Scheme, Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award and the Credit Suisse Young Artist Award in 2009.
"Antoine Tamestit has achieved that rare thing as a violist of playing at the highest level with orchestra and being constantly in demand as a chamber musician and recitalist. His repertoire ranges from the Baroque period to the contemporary, and he has performed and recorded many world premieres. He played George Benjamin's Viola, Viola with Tabea Zimmermann at the Feldkirch Festival before recording it in 2003 for Nimbus Records, and premiered the Concerto for two violas by Bruno Mantovani written for Tabea Zimmermann and himself with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France and the WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln. In 2009, the Austrian composer Olga Neuwirth wrote a concerto for Tamestit which he premiered in Vienna, Berlin, and Tokyo.
As soloist, Antoine Tamestit has worked twice with the Wiener Philharmoniker and with the London Symphony Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphonieorchester, Deutsche Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Radio-Symphonie-Orchester-Berlin, Dresdner Philharmonie, Radio-Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart, with major French orchestras including the Orchestre de Paris and Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France and with the several BBC symphony orchestras. He has also played in the opening concerts of the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York together with Louis Langrée and Christian Tetzlaff.
Chamber music is an important element of Antoine Tamestit's work and life. He appeared at the 2012 Verbier Festival in chamber music with Leonidas Kavakos, Gautier Capucon and others and at the Salzburg and Edinburgh Festivals as part of the string trio with Frank Peter Zimmermann and Christian Poltera. He is a regular guest in both chamber music and recital in major halls across the world - the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Vienna Musikverein, Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall in London, Megaron in Athens, Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, Konserthus in Stockholm and the Cité de la Musique de Paris. In November 2006 he performed at New York's Lincoln Center – the first time the Center has programmed a viola recital.
Antoine Tamestit has a distinguished discography - a solo recording of J.S. Bach and G. Ligeti released in 2007 by Naïve/Ambroisie, Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante with Renaud Capuçon, Louis Langrée and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra for Virgin Classics; Schnittke Concerto with Warsaw Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra and Dmitri Kitaenko for Naïve/Ambroisie and Schubert's Trout Quintet with Christian Tetzlaff, Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, Alois Posch and Martin Helmchen for Pentatone. Most recently, he has released an all-Schubert recording with soprano Sandrine Piau (Naïve), and the complete Gabriel Fauré Piano Quartets with the Trio Wanderer (Harmonia Mundi), as well as Berlioz’ Harold in Italy with Marc Minkowski and Les Musiciens du Louvre (Naïve). He recently recorded a new CD of J.S. Bach's Suites with Naïve Records, released in November 2012.
Antoine Tamestit is professor at the Cologne Musikhochschule. He plays on a viola made by Stradivarius in 1672, loaned by the Habisreutinger Foundation."