Eugene Izotov is one of the leading wind players of his generation. His playing continues to receive wide acclaim for its "luminous beauty” (San Francisco Chronicle), “lyrical gold” (Chicago Tribune), and “fiery Russian temperament” (Boston Globe). Appointed by Michael Tilson Thomas in 2014, Eugene Izotov is the principal oboist of the San Francisco Symphony. He previously served as the principal oboist of the Chicago Symphony, appointed by Daniel Barenboim, principal oboist of the Metropolitan Opera, appointed by James Levine, and as guest principal oboist with the New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic. Izotov is the first Russian-born musician in history to hold a principal wind position in any major American symphony orchestra. His numerous awards include top prizes at solo competitions in Saint Petersburg (1991), Moscow (1990), New York (1995), and at the Fernand Gillet International Competition (2001).
Izotov has appeared over 70 times as soloist with orchestras such as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Boston Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Pacific Music Festival Orchestra, and has collaborated with Bernard Haitink, Riccardo Muti, Valery Gergiev, James Levine, Nicholas McGegan, Edo De Waart, Ludovic Morlot, Ton Koopman, and Michael Tilson Thomas performing works by Mozart, Strauss, Marcello, Haydn, Martinu, Vivaldi, Carter, Hummel, Krommer and Bach. Eugene Izotov has recorded for Sony Classical, BMG, Boston Records, Elektra, SFSMedia, CSOResond, and was a featured soloist with the Chicago Symphony under the baton of John Williams on the Oscar-nominated recording for Steven Spielberg's film Lincoln. He has also recently been a guest soloist on NPR’s Live from Here with Chris Thile. A prolific chamber musician, Eugene Izotov has collaborated regularly with the MET Chamber Ensemble at Carnegie Hall, as well as with Yefim Bronfman, Pinchas Zukerman, Jamie Laredo, Yo Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax, André Watts, and the Tokyo String Quartet.
Eugene Izotov teaches at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and at The Colburn School. He has also served on the faculties of The Juilliard School, DePaul University, and Pacific Music Festival. He regularly presents master classes at conservatories across the nation and abroad, such as Aspen, Oberlin, New World Symphony, Boston University, Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music, Vanderbilt, University of Michigan, Tanglewood, Verbier, Domaine Forget, and Interlochen. Eugene Izotov has served as an oboe mentor for the 2011 YouTube Symphony Orchestra during its residency at the Sydney Opera House in Sydney, Australia, which included a live internet simulcast to over 30 million of worldwide viewers. In 2019 Eugene Izotov was invited by Valery Gergiev to serve on the first-ever woodwind jury of the Tchaikovsky International Competition. Izotov’s former students are enjoying careers in symphony orchestras of Chicago, San Francisco, Saint Louis, Montreal, Kansas City, Buffalo, San Diego, Lexington, Ontario, Atlanta, Osaka, Fort Worth, Jerusalem, and others.
Born in Moscow, Russia, Izotov studied at the Gnesin School of Music with Ivan Pushechnikov, Sergey Velikanov, and Alexander Izotov (his father). After immigrating to the United States, he studied at Boston University with Ralph Gomberg.