School of Music > Faculty & Staff > Faculty A-Z > Michael Hovnanian

Michael Hovnanian

BFA California Institute of the Arts

Courses Taught
Orchestral Repertoire

Michael Hovnanian grew up in the Seattle area. His primary teachers were James Harnett and Ronald Simon of the Seattle Symphony. He also studied with Frederick Tinsley of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the California Institute of the Arts, where he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. He was a member of the Victoria B.C. and San Antonio Symphony orchestras before being appointed to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) in 1989 by Sir Georg Solti, where he remained until 2019.

Michael has appeared as a double bass soloist with the Seattle Symphony, Northwest Chamber Orchestra, and the Highland Park Strings. As a chamber musician, he has performed at the Northwestern Winter Chamber Music Festival and the CSO Chamber Series. He is currently a member of Music of the Baroque, the Chicago Philharmonic, and the Chicago Opera Theater, and performs with a variety of other local ensembles.

In addition to classical music, Michael has an interest in various styles of music. He founded The Growlers: a double bass ensemble. He is also a member of The Gunnelpumpers, a drum-and-bass-centered, groove-oriented improvisational ensemble.