Hailed by Michael Tilson Thomas as “an excellent violinist,” Tomas Cotik is internationally recognized as a soloist, chamber musician, and professor. A much sought after recording artist, Dr. Cotik is currently involved in more than fourteen CD recordings for Naxos and Centaur Records, which have received over a hundred reviews and the highest praises from some of the best-known publications. Committed to passing on his passion for music, Dr. Cotik taught at the University of Miami, Florida International University, and West Texas A&M University. He was appointed assistant professor of Violin at Portland State University in 2016.
MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL: "Recordings Of The Year. My first chamber choice for the year... I’ve had a listen to a few alternatives…including Isaac Stern and Daniel Barenboim on Sony Classics and Lydia Mordkovitch and Gerhard Oppitz on Chandos, but this duo on Centaur pretty much ticks all the boxes”
FANFARE MAGAZINE: "Cotik never indulges in violinistic brilliance at the expense of music, but he sounds consistently brilliant nevertheless…for those open to so thoughtful a violinist as Cotik, these readings should stand beside Pinchas Zukerman's readings on the shelf. Strongly recommended” “Cotik and Lin make Kreisler seem almost smarmy...Isabelle Faust almost mannered...and Julia Fischer...as though she's filed down the detail”
AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE: "Everyone who plays these works should hear these exemplary performances...you will never hear these Telemann Fantasias played so well. I enjoy the Piazzolla Tango Etudes more as played by Cotik than by anyone else."
DOWNBEAT MAGAZINE: “exceptional... Piazzolla can be played differently than this, but provably not better.”
Mr. Cotik’s CD recordings received the highest praises from some of the best-known publications such as Fanfare, American Record Guide, Downbeat, and MusicWeb International. His debut album, the first volume of the complete works of Franz Schubert for violin and piano, was released in 2012 on Centaur Records and received numerous rave reviews in the international press, including one in Fanfare Magazine that compared their CD favorably with the classic recording by Rachmaninoff and Kreisler. This recording was also nominated as “Recording of the Year” 2013 by MusicWeb International and was broadcast nationwide by American Public Media. In 2013, Naxos released the duo’s album "Tango Nuevo" with music by Astor Piazzolla for violin and piano, described by different critics as "among the very best" Piazzolla albums, “by some distance, Naxos's best Piazzolla recordings,” as well as “exceptional... Piazzolla can be played differently than this, but probably not better” (Downbeat Magazine). In 2015, Centaur Records released the second installment of Schubert’s complete works for violin and piano and Tomas's debut solo violin CD, which includes solo violin works by Telemann, Bach, Piazzolla, as well as the world premiere recording of original works by Franz Schubert. American Record Guide wrote “you will never hear these Telemann Fantasias played so well” as well as “I enjoy the Piazzolla Tango Etudes more as played by Cotik than by anyone else.” On the strength of the success of these recordings, Tomas Cotik received a long-term recording contract with Centaur Records to record all 16 sonatas for violin and piano by Mozart. Other upcoming projects include a second Piazzolla album and a disc of violin showpieces. Cotik has worked extensively with producers such as Blanton Alspaugh and Judith Sherman and also produced four recordings himself.
As a former member of the acclaimed Amernet String Quartet in residence at Florida International University, Tomas Cotik toured extensively throughout the US and Israel. Prior to this, he was a member of the Delray String Quartet, with whom he commissioned, premiered, and recorded works by Richard Danielpour and Kenneth Fuchs in 3 albums for Naxos produced by Judith Sherman. Previously, he was the first violinist of the Harrington String Quartet, with which he recorded the Mendelssohn viola quintets with renowned violist James Dunham in an album produced by Blanton Alspaugh and engineered by John Newton. Further chamber music collaborations include concerts with Joseph Kalichstein, Franklin Cohen, Alexander Fiterstein, as well as, some members from the Cleveland, Miami, Pro Arte and Vogler string quartets, among others.
While placing an emphasis on the music of the first Viennese school and early romantic music, Tomas Cotik has also focused on a wide spectrum of music going from historically informed baroque performances to the works of his countryman Astor Piazzolla. He has also performed, recorded, and premiered dozens of works by contemporary composers and worked with musicians such us Richard Danielpour, Kenneth Fuchs, Augusta Read Thomas, Dimitri Tymoczko, Chinary Ung, Karolla Obermueller, and Kurt Cacioppo, just to name a few. Pop music collaborations include recordings with Natalie Cole, Gloria Estefan, Barry Gibb, George Benson, and Alejandro Sanz as well as performances with Smokey Robinson, Donna Summer, Bobby McFerrin, Chick Corea, Dave Grusin, Franck Sinatra Jr., and Take 6.
Mr. Cotik has performed hundreds of chamber music concerts internationally, giving recitals in Germany, Holland, Switzerland, Spain, Canada, Argentina, Mexico, Japan and throughout the U.S., participating in more than 15 international music festivals and creating collaborative projects with artists from various fields. In the 2015/16 season he appeared at New York’s Merkin Hall, at Music Mountain Festival in Connecticut, at the Kennedy Center in Washington, as well as in concerts in Detroit, Las Vegas, Omaha, Naples, Tampa, Miami, and tours in California, Mexico, Taiwan, and Israel. These concerts received enthusiastic reviews in the Strad and the Washington Post, among many other publications.
Cotik was a first-prize winner at the National Broadcast Music Competition in his native Argentina in 1997, as well as the winner of the Government of Canada Award for 2003-2005. He performed as a soloist in Buenos Aires, Amarillo, Miami, and Toronto, performing the Bach, Haydn, Vivaldi, Tchaikovsky, and Bruch Violin Concertos, the Schubert Rondo for violin and strings and Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons.” A leader of various orchestras, Tomas Cotik was a rotating concertmaster with the New World Symphony, principal second violin of the Florida Grand Opera and the Palm Beach Symphony, as well as the concertmaster of the Amarillo Symphony, with which he also appeared as a soloist. Mr. Cotik was invited to perform as the concertmaster of the Minas Gerais Philarmonic in Brazil under Fabio Mechetti. He has performed with several internationally prominent conductors such as Michael Tilson Thomas, Valery Gergiev, Roberto Abbado, Yakov Kreizberg, Marin Alsop, Stephan Deneve, Roger Norrington and Robert Spano in significant venues including Carnegie Hall.
Dr. Tomas Cotik earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Miami and completed his doctoral research on the interpretation of Schubert's violin and piano music. He holds a degree in both Bachelor and Master of Music from the Freiburg University of Music in Germany and further holds an Artist Diploma from the Glenn Gould School in Toronto. He studied with Nicolas Chumachenco and Lorand Fenyves. He also worked closely with members of the Vermeer, Tokyo, and Endellion String Quartets, as well as notable artists, including Midori, Christian Tetzlaff, Ana Chumachenko Heinz Holliger, Leon Fleisher and the leaders of the Vienna, Berlin, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Cleveland, and San Francisco symphonies.
Committed to both performing and teaching, Dr. Tomas Cotik has been appointed Assistant Professor at Portland State University in 2016. Prior to this, he was part of the faculty of the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music, Florida International University and West Texas A&M University. He has also given presentations at national and international music conventions, such as the Texas Music Educators Association convention in San Antonio, the College Music Society’s international convention in Buenos Aires and the American String Teachers Association’s national conference in Tampa. He has held master classes at universities across the country such as Ithaca College, California State University Northridge, the North Carolina Chamber Music Institute, West Virginia University, Delaware County Community College, California State University, Fresno, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, University of New Mexico, University of Tampa, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha Conservatory of Music, Florida Gulf Coast University, and Florida Atlantic University.
“I highly commend Mr. Cotik for his innovative interpretations and I hope many future audiences will experience his musical excellence”
“The BBC Music team’s current favourites”
“exceptional...Piazzolla can be played differently than this, but provably not better.”
“Evocative concert of Jewish classical music”
“The technical qualities of the recording - which is on the NAXOS label, by the way - are excellent.”
“outstanding from the very beginning”
“bemerkenswert, kunstvolle und expressive Interpretationen...auf hohem Niveau und den jeweiligen Stilen perfekt angepasst”
“laudable level of technical accuracy…tenderness and warmth”
“Las versiones son óptimas por la compenetración estilística del dúo y la prestancia instrumental del admirable violinista”
“a musician who prepares thoroughly and has great respect for the music he performs”
“un disco la cui qualità riesce a proporre la freschezza affascinante della cultura musicale germanica come nuova, come se non si fossero mai ascoltate prima”
“Some of the music is sultry while other works are fast, rhythmic, and ornamented to show the exquisite virtuosity of Cotik”
“una nueva forma de mirar, entender y percibir la música de diferentes épocas”
“None of these pieces has ever sounded quite like this before.”
“Everyone who plays these works should hear these exemplary performances...you will never hear these Telemann Fantasias played so well ”
“this is clearly a team to watch. I am sure we will be hearing good things from them in the future”
“Cotik phrases this music with such feeling, making you wonder if it could possibly sound better in any other performance.”
“among the very best Piazzolla albums”
“should leave listeners almost breathless…a vibrancy and attention to detail...strong individuality and… vitality”
“Hace muy poco descubrí esta maravilla...dos extraordinarios instrumentalistas que uniendo su talento logran...algo genial.”
“unusual depth and broad compass...absolutely brilliant... unmistakable vitality...optimally recorded”
“Un disco revelador de la maestría de los jóvenes intérpretes que lo firman: Tomas Cotik y Tao Lin.”
“wonderful album…impressive for the elegance and sensitivity of the interpretations”
“a treat from start to finish”
“conviction, commitment, diplomacy, and character”
“I was immediately impressed by their virtuosity and also their understanding of Piazzolla’s music. I was anxious to see them perform in person”
“brilliant Argentinean violinist”
“Cotik makes Kreisler seem almost smarmy, Isabelle Faust almost mannered, and Julia Fischer as though she's filed down the detail”
“clarity and tonal opulence rare in recordings of violin music”
“None of these pieces has ever sounded quite like this before....Cotik handles it beautifully, with tremendous clarity of line and evenness of tone”
“excellent style, which is not frequently found”
“A neglected stash of unrecorded Schubert”
“recreating the visceral charge of Piazzolla’s legendary quintet concerts and recordings”
“un violinista excelente... que recoge una forma rigurosa, natural y fuera de lo común de entender e interpretar la música”
“I marvel at the technical skill which effortlessly encompasses these deeply contrasting styles....a technical as well as expressive master stroke”
“violinist Tomas Cotik is always up for a new challenge”
“The Piazzolla album is not just Cotik as brilliant interpreter, but also as creative mind.”
“an exemplary presentation of some marvelous music”
“un trabajo de mucha calidad, por la originalidad de los arreglos y especialmente porque se trata de un excelente instrumentista”
“I find the Cotik and Lin performances most interesting and the sound on their disc is excellent”
“this is one of the great Piazzolla discs, and in perfect sound quality, I urge you to buy it.”
“this superbly produced Schubert disc…comes warmly commended”
“an excellent violinist”
“If you love the solo violin, you won't find a better recording to suit your tastes”
“My first chamber choice for the year. ”
“Cotik vanta un violinismo costantemente brillante e un colore di suono caldo e avvolgente”
“This is an excellent recital. I enjoy the Piazzolla Tango Etudes more as played by Cotik than by anyone else. ”
“excellent violin playing...extremely enjoyable interpretations of music that I love”
“there is no question that this disc is, by some distance, Naxos's best Piazzolla recording ”
“their lofty musicianship dwarfs their profound scholarship”
“I’ve had a listen to a few alternatives…including Isaac Stern with Daniel Baremboim and Lydia Mordkovitch, but this duo pretty much ticks all the boxes”
“absolutely impeccable, with intonation in the centre of every note, and his left hand flying around the fingerboard with remarkable agility”
“Cotik and Tao Lin have…honored not only their professions as musicians, but the memory and work of Franz Schubert”
“intelligent and sensitive...glories in...colorations and shared emphasis”
“Cotik transcends even the profoundly meditative”
“Overall, these two discs featuring Cotik must be regarded as among the finest performances for their consistent artistry and idiomatic grasp”
“true treasure...one of the latest gems to emerge from the season”