On the Couch with Sharon Grigoryan

ASQ-Sharon-Grigoryan-photo-by-Jacqui-WayWho is Sharon Grigoryan?
I’m a cellist, who’s been lucky to play with The Australian String Quartet for the last seven years. I also perform in a duo with my husband Slava, and we love being on the road together. I’m also a mother to my 15-month-old son, Sebastian. I’m a passionate gardener and grower of anything edible, so I’m just loving the season right now with all our fruit trees budding!

What would you do differently to what you do now?
I really love the life of a musician, as I’m able to do so many different and creative things. However, if I wasn’t a musician, I’d definitely be in something that involves helping animals, or, working with plants.

Who inspires you and why?
My close friends. They continue to amaze me with their patience, love, loyalty, and the ability to show empathy and compassion to all around them. Also I greatly admire anyone who admits their faults and makes the most out of their lives and themselves.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Continue to give joy, in my own small way, to people through my music. I hope to raise my son into a person with empathy and respect to all people and creatures around him. We need more of that in the world today, I think. I also love gardening, because I feel like I can at least care for and nuture my own tiny little part of this planet.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Home, with my husband and son. We both travel a lot for our careers, and the three of us being home together is a novelty. We just love being at home with our garden and chickens! However if not home, I would probably say a tiny little stone cottage in a little French town, where we can stroll through the wildflowers and stuff ourselves with endless amounts of soft cheese and baguette!

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
The Barossa Valley. I know it sounds cliché, but it really is beautiful, with beautiful people there. David Franz cellar door is a must for me; apart from having wonderful wine and food, it has THE most beautiful view of the Valley.

What are you currently reading?
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. It is such a charming book that makes you smile on every page.

What are you currently listening to?
I just drove from Robe back to Adelaide yesterday, and I had a mixture of Bach, Lyle Mays, and the Punch Brothers on to keep me going.

Happiness is?
My family and friends, being at home, sharing a martini and great food with my husband.

What does the future hold for you?
I’m so excited about the future! After being in the ASQ for seven years, and before that, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra for three, I am looking forward to the variety and flexibility of the freelancing life. I’m so lucky to have had the jobs that I’ve had, which gives me the freedom to do a variety of things now.

I feel like a kid in a candy store – I want to do it all! Orchestral, chamber orchestral, chamber music, collaborating with jazz/folk musicians, teaching, curating festivals and programs, radio presenting, touring in my duo with my husband Slava, recording….the possibilities just make me feel giddy!

In celebration of Sharon’s seven-year tenure with the ASQ, this is your chance to see one of her final performances with ASQ colleagues and collaborators Dale Barltrop and Francesca Hiew (violins) and Stephen King (viola), live-streamed around Australia and the world, from the stunning UKARIA Cultural Centre in the Adelaide Hills on Friday 13 November 2020, and then on demand (via ASQ Live + On Demand) until 31 December 2020. For more information, visit: www.asq.com.au for details.

Image: Sharon Grigoryan – photo by Jacqui Way