Maxim Samarov was born in Moscow, Russia in a family of musicians and started his music studies at the age of five. He studied cello at Junior College of the Moscow Conservatory and later at Jerusalem Music Academy and Southern Methodist University, and performed extensively as a cello soloist, chamber music player and orchestra member in Russia, Europe, Israel, and the United States. Having developed interest in conducting in his mid-20’s, he received his graduate degrees in orchestral conducting from University of Missouri-Kansas City and Michigan State University, in addition to extensive studies with Kenneth Kiesler in summer workshops and privately.
Dr. Samarov is currently the orchestra director at Tulane University, where he also teaches chamber music and conducting. He has previously held faculty positions with St. Cloud State University (MN) and Luther College (IA).
He has appeared as a guest conductor with Pleven Philharmonic and Rousse Philharmonic in Bulgaria and Sinfonia Bucharest in Romania and Fleur de Lys Chamber Orchestra in New Orleans, and conducted the premiere recordings of Symphonies ##4, 6, and 7 by Canadian composer Alan Belkin. Dr. Samarov made his operatic debut conducting Verdi's "Rigoletto" at State Opera Burgas (Bulgaria) in 2014 and conducted Puccini's "Madama Butterfly" at State Opera Stara Zagora, Bulgaria in 2015. He performs regularly as a substitute cellist with Louisiana Philharmonic and is in demand as a high school/youth orchestra clinician.
Mr. Samarov is also active as a composer—among his recently premiered compositions are wind quintet, string quartet and a suite for 10 winds. He is also the author of a guitar concerto and a number of other works. He resides in New Orleans with his wife Tanya, a pediatrician, and their son Julian.