A fixture in the musical landscape of the Bay Area, Lev Rankov has been a member of first violin sections of both the San Francisco Ballet and Opera Orchestras since 1979 and 1980, respectively. Prior to these appointments and his move to the United States, Lev was concertmaster of the St. Petersburg Chamber Orchestra in St. Petersburg, Russia. With this esteemed ensemble, he performed as soloist various baroque and classical concerti by J.S. Bach, Vivaldi, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, as well as modern repertoire such as Richard Strauss’s “Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme” and Stravinsky’s “L’Histoire du Soldat” and the Pulchinella Suite.
In addition to being a member of the San Francisco Opera and Ballet Orchestras, Lev also has had extensive leadership experience in various Bay Area ensembles. He has served as concertmaster of the Carmel Chamber Orchestra, San Francisco Chamber Orchestra, principal second of the Monterey Symphony Orchestra, and was acting principal second of the San Francisco Opera Orchestra.
Lev started studying the violin in his native city of St. Petersburg, where he was enrolled in the Special Music School of the St. Petersburg Conservatory of Music during his formative years. He was later a student in the class of Professor Boris Gutnikov at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, where he graduated with distinction in solo performance.