Meet the Musicians: Michael Hovnanian

Name: Michael Aram Hovnanian
Birthplace: Southfield, MI
Instrument/Title: Assistant Principal Bass
Member since: 2007 

1.  How did you get started in music?  

My father was a huge classical music aficionado, so I was exposed to music from the day I was born, and that really set the stage for my love of symphonic music. I was also inspired by a couple of my cousins who played instruments. I wanted to emulate them, so I started playing cello in elementary school long before switching to the double bass. I can't leave out the impact of the soundtrack to the Star Wars movies; I love those scores to this day!

2. What do you like the best about your instrument?  

I love being the foundation upon which the harmony, melody, and counterpoint are built.   

3. If you could play another instrument, what would it be and why? 

 The cello. It is such a beautiful instrument and has so much great repertoire!

4.  How do you handle mistakes during a performance?   

I do my best to put them out of my mind and stay in the moment. I will have plenty of time to beat myself up over them later!

5.  What have been some of your favorite musical moments so far?   

Too many to list, but these are a few that come to mind: playing Beethoven's 9th with the Detroit Symphony, performing at Carnegie Hall With the GRS, and doing a symphony concert and a Halloween punk rock show on the same day was a blast! 

6.  What do you enjoy the most about your profession?  

 The opportunity to touch people in a deep and profound way.   

 7.  What do you enjoy doing when you’re not performing? 

 I enjoy spending time with my wife and son most of all. I also enjoy video games, comics, and movies. Pretty much anything nerd related!    

8.  What is the last book you read? 

 The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen Hawking (it was definitely a bit over my head at times!). 

9.  Who is your favorite musician or band? 

 The Misfits.

10. What would you like people to know about the Grand Rapids Symphony?   

Every member of our orchestra is equally passionate about both the music we make and the positive impact it can have on our community.  

Posted by Sam Napolitan at 6:00 AM
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