SEAL BEACH — When your father plays violin, your brother plays violin, your cousins play violin and your aunt plays viola, clearly the sounds of strings run deep in the family.
So it was only natural that Maxim Eshkenazy take up the family trade and pick up a violin at age 5. His mother — the engineer of the family — insisted. His father, though, wasn't so sure.
But it all worked out. That motherly insistence is what eventually brought Eshkenazy far from his European homeland and to Orange County audiences.
The 35-year-old musician from Bulgaria is in his third season as the assistant conductor of the Pacific Symphony. Eshkenazy's duties include leading the Costa Mesa-based orchestra's Class Act partnership with local schools, the Family Musical Mornings series and the Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra.
Eshkenazy, a Seal Beach resident, traces his family lineage in Bulgaria back 500 years. Before that, they were Spaniards.