US concertmaster heads west

US concertmaster heads west


norman lebrecht

May 01, 2018

The Buffalo Philharmonic concertmaster Dennis Kim is switching to the Pacific Symphony.

Anyone figure out why?

This is Kim’s fifth orchestra. He has previously been concertmaster with Tucson, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Seoul and Tampere (Finland).



  • James B. says:

    That’s great for Dennis! He’s a great player and is moving to a much more pleasant place to live and work in!

  • Patrick says:

    For one, the Pacific Symphony is a phenomenal orchestra. Really outstanding. Absolutely tops.

  • M2N2K says:

    A better climate? A higher salary? A finer orchestra? All or none of the above? Ask Dennis.

  • V.Lind says:

    Is there really any question here? Buffalo or California? A small regional symphony or one of the richest in the country? It’s in Orange County and is rolling in dough (and is pretty good as well).

    Buffalo has done well with its Symphony, but this is an offer few could refuse.

    • Mark J Henriksen says:

      Not sure that what you are saying is the whole story. The Pacific Symphony is a per-service orchestra. The resulting base is only around 25% higher for Pacific compared to Buffalo and the cost of living is 50% higher in Orange County. But there are most likely other opportunities in the area for freelancing and, of course, the sunshine and easy winter.

  • Anthea kreston says:

    Dennis was my standpartner in school. Not only is he a phenomenal player, he is also hilarious and has a heart of gold.

  • Sue says:

    I know Buffalo Mozzarella, but I don’t know Buffalo Philharmonic!:-)

  • Old Man in the Midwest says:

    Lots of Pacific Symphony musicians play in the studios around LA and make much more in that work than playing in the orchestra. And it’s a wonderful orchestra like others have mentioned.

  • Mrs. Gyubee Twomelonas says:

    I am pretty sure Dennis Kim is moving for the AYCE Korean bbq. He knows how to eat.

  • Gyubee Melonas says:

    I have had the pleasure of knowing and hearing Dennis since we attended ENCORE and Aspen Music Festivals as kids, and most recently on tour with the Buffalo Philharmonic. Dennis is a phenomenal violinist not to mention an incredible human being. He will be missed out east but he will be just as appreciated for all he has to offer out west. Pacific Symphony is lucky to have him!

  • Mr. EightyPieces orElse says:

    Can’t wait to hear about the new food options out there!

  • Pruntal Tingey says:

    Let’s see if he gets tenure this time. 5th times a charm!