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Eugene Levinson is currently the principal double bassist of the New York Philharmonic and teaches at the Juilliard School. According to Book 1 of the New Method for Double Bass (Carl Fischer edition), Levinson, who was born in Kiev, began to study music at the age of nine. He graduated from the Leningrad Conservatory, later receiving a doctoral degree from this institution. At the age of twenty-nine, he was the youngest member ever to be appointed to the Leningrad Conservatory's faculty. In Leningrad, he also became a member of the Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra, where he played for almost sixteen years, and was Principal Bass of the Leningrad Chamber Orchestra for thirteen years.
Levinson traveled to the United States in 1977, and began a short tenure as principal Bass of the Minnesota Orchestra soon after his arrival. While living in the States, he served on the faculty of both the Sarasota Music Festival and the Aspen Music Festival, as well as the Indiana University Summer School. He joined the bass faculty of Juilliard in 1985, and was appointed Principal Bass of the New York Philharmonic in May of that year.
In 2003, Levinson was given the Special Recognition Award in Orchestral Performance from the International Society of Bassists for his "extraordinary skills and contribution to the worldwide community of bassists".
The School of Agility
The School of Agility is a book by Eugene Levinson (also published by Carl Fischer) which concentrates on improving vital fingering technique for bass players of all levels. His approach focuses on improving rhythm, intonation and fingerboard agility via a variety of fingerings.
The book includes:-Fingerings designed to allow the individual bassist to find those most suitable to their style and level of playing.-Fingerings appropriate to certain playing situations-Fingerings concerned with the shaping of phrases by facilitating smoother transitions.-Techniques to help produce a clean and clear sound.
Many respected publications have offered their opinions on this book;
"Levinson, a legendary figure...Any method by him is certainly worth a second, third and even a fourth look" -The Strad
"A great publication for serious string bass students" -Instrumentalist
"A stellar contribution to the field of bass pedagogy" -American String Teacher