José Maria Blumenschein

José Maria Blumenschein, a native of Freiburg (Germany) born of Brazilian parents, currently serves as 1st Concertmaster of the WDR Radio Symphony Orchestra in Cologne after serving as Associate Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra for three seasons. During his tenure with WDR he also took two Seasons off to perform as first Concertmaster of the Vienna State Opera and Philharmonic.

As a passionate leader he regularly performs with many Orchestras and Ensembles such as the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Bayreuth Festival Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra of Europe, London Symphony Orchestra, Bayerische Staatsoper, Dresden Staatskapelle, NDR Radio Orchestra and many more.

Blumenschein is also a founding member of ‘Kammermusik Köln’, a chamber music series in Cologne founded by members of WDR Radio, Gürzenich Orchestra, and Cologne Conservatory members to be the first all year chamber music series.

Born in 1985, Blumenschein received his first violin lesson at the age of four in Freiburg, Germany, at the “Pflüger Institute for Highly Gifted Children”. In 1990 he began studies with Vera Kramarowa in Mannheim. In 2001 Blumenschein was accepted to the Curtis Institute of Music where he studied with conductor and violinist Joseph Silverstein and served as Concertmaster of the Curtis Symphony Orchestra.

Blumenschein has been performing with the Mahler Orchestra for almost two decades. Since 2023, he has shared the MCO’s concertmaster position with Matthew Truscott.