Isaac Pastor-Chermak


Joined the orchestra: 2024

Cellist Isaac Pastor-Chermak enjoys a diverse and varied career in symphony and opera orchestras, chamber music, and solo and recording engagements, as well as engaging deeply with his community as a conductor, educator, and nonprofit board member. He is Principal Cellist of Vallejo Symphony, Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony, and Eisenstadt (Austria) Classical Music Festival; Assistant Principal Cellist of Opera San Jose and Fresno Philharmonic; and a member of Berkeley Symphony, California Symphony, Santa Barbara Symphony, Monterey Symphony, and Reno Philharmonic. In 2023, he was guest principal cellist of the Britt Festival Orchestra. His discography includes The Shadow Dancer with Auriga String Quartet, Backlash Bach with Red Cedar Chamber Music, and Preludes and Prologues with pianist Alison Lee. A limited edition vinyl LP, The Year 1948, is due out in May 2024, featuring cello sonatas by Prokofiev and Elliott Carter.

Pastor-Chermak is Adjunct Professor of Music History at San Francisco Conservatory of Music; at home, he teaches an award-winning private cello studio. A ‘recovering conductor’, he is Founder and Music Director Emeritus of Solano Youth Chamber Orchestra. Isaac and his wife, pianist Alison Lee, live in a 100-year-old house in the Berkeley Hills with their cat, Waffle.