Whether onstage at Davies Hall or playing to sold-out arena crowds, Ilana Blumberg Thomas has been at home performing for diverse audiences since she was a child. Following her solo debut with the San Francisco Symphony at age 16 for a celebration of renowned violinist Yehudi Menuhin’s historic debut, she embarked on a career that has spanned the worlds of classical and popular music, taken her across several continents and, most importantly, allowed her to share her craft with hundreds of thousands of eager concert-goers along the way.
Appreciating the vibrant variety and forward-thinking energy of the San Francisco Bay Area, Ilana currently lives in the East Bay, balancing a schedule that incorporates symphonic and classical violin concerts, chamber music and recording projects, appearances as an acoustic and electric violinist at prestigious private events, a busy teaching studio, and regular appearances as a popular violinist with an exciting array of celebrated artists. Recent past years have found her onstage supporting major acts including Andrea Bocelli, the Eagles, Michael Bublé, Gregory Porter, Chuck Prophet, Il Divo, Warren Haynes and Josh Groban, to name a few. With electronic duo ODESZA, she was featured in performances on NYE in San Francisco, at their inaugural music festival in Riviera Maya, Mexico, and at their tour finale shows in Stanford and Los Angeles, all of which received rave reviews and helped her satisfy her passion for electric violin music.
On classical violin, Ilana regularly appears with area orchestras from San Jose to Sacramento, including the Oakland Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, Berkeley Symphony, Symphony Silicon Valley, and the Modesto Symphony, where she serves as Associate Concertmaster. Other regular collaborations include the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble, West Edge Opera, Earplay, Opera Parallele and guest appearances with many other established groups. She also treasures her role as a wedding violinist, helping innumerable couples seal their vows and celebrate their happiest of days with everything from Ed Sheeran songs to R&B hits to traditional favorites like the Pachelbel Canon.
Before her return to her native Bay Area, Ilana lived in New York City, where she performed as a popular violinist, in renowned chamber orchestras such as Philharmonia Virtuosi, and in various Broadway productions, including Elton John’s Aida and the Tony Award-winning Producers. Her Broadway affiliations have continued on the West Coast with ‘The Unreachable Stars’, featuring Phantom of the Opera lead Jeremy Stolle, and supporting the recent SF production of Anastasia. She also has appeared at all the major American music festivals, including Aspen, Marlboro, Santa Fe Chamber Music, and Tanglewood, where she participated in recording a series of videos with Wynton Marsalis. Her other recordings can be heard on the Deutsche Grammophon, Argo, and Albany labels, as well as with contemporary acts including the Monophonics, Kev Choice, Alannah Royale, Chuck Prophet, and many others
When not performing, Ilana devotes herself to nurturing her varied group of students, ranging in age from 3 to ‘not willing to admit their age’, and her two sons. She also serves on the instrumental music faculty at the Oakland School for the Arts. Never one to do anything halfway, she balances her love of distance running with a marginally unhealthy obsession with books.
6/7: Private Event, Palace of Fine Arts SF
6/11: Private Event, Concord
6/12: Private Event, Vallejo
6/12: Private Event, Mountain View
6/18: Private Event, Mill Valley
6/18: Private Event, Novato
6/19: Private Event, Tiburon
6/19: Private Event, Viansa Sonoma
6/21: Private Event, Nella Terra Cellars Sunol
6/25 Private Event, Gamble Gardens Palo Alto
7/3: Merced Symphony (Concertmaster)
7/4: Private Event, Stonetree Golf Club Novato
7/7: Private Event, Heather Farm Park, Walnut Creek
7/10: Private Event, Redwood City
7/18: Private Event, Oakland
7/18: Private Event, Ruby Hill Golf Club, Pleasanton
7/24-25: West Edge Opera Cal Shakes, Orinda