David Chernyavsky who joined the San Francisco Symphony in 2009, was born in 1978 in St. Petersburg, Russia. He began to study violin at the age of six. His first teacher was Samuil Zabezhinsky. At the age of eleven, Chernyavsky gave his first solo recital. When he was 15, he entered the Special Music School at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, where he studied with Alexander Yuriev and later with the first violinist of the Taneyev Quartet, Vladimir Ovcharek. In 1992, he won second prize at the Open Competition of Young Violinists in St. Petersburg. In 1996, he became a prizewinner at the Lions Club International Music Competition in Deauville, France. That same year, he entered the St. Petersburg Conservatory. During his studies, he gave numerous concerts in St. Petersburg and also throughout Lithuania, Finland, Germany, and Poland.
In 1997, Chernyavsky came to the United States to study at the Indiana University School of Music with the famous professor Nelli Shkolnikova. In 1998, he won the IU Concerto Competition and performed as a soloist with the Indiana University Concert Orchestra. In 2000 Chernyavsky with his student quartet participated in the IU String Quartet Competition and was awarded the Kuttner Quartet Scholarship. In the same year, he became a member of the Spoleto USA festival orchestra, where he performed as a concertmaster during the 2001 and 2002 summer seasons.
After graduating from Indiana University, David continued his studies at the Juilliard School in New York City. In 2003 he graduated from Juilliard with a master's degree and immediately joined the St. Petersburg String Quartet. As a member of the quartet, David has performed over 180 chamber music concerts throughout the world and collaborated with such distinguished musicians as Ida Kavafian, Ruth Laredo, Michael Tree, and many others. In 2005 Chernyavsky was appointed an Assistant Concertmaster of the Washington National Opera Orchestra. In September 2007, he joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Chernyavsky has recorded several CDs with the St. Petersburg Quartet and with the Joel Rubin Klezmer Music Ensemble, and he has released his own solo CD, Klezmer Violin.