American violinist Melissa White has enchanted audiences and critics around the world as both a soloist and a chamber musician. Her February 2020 performance with the National Philharmonic was deemed “absolutely breathtaking” by Maryland Theatre Guide critic Katie Gaab, who cited the “grace, precision, and warmth” of her playing in Florence Price’s Violin Concerto No. 1; reviewing the same concert for The Washington Post, Matthew Guerrieri called her “an excellent advocate, prioritizing ease and fluency over intensity, suiting the music’s lyric and episodic nature.” Ms. White’s other recent orchestral activity includes engagements with the Lansing Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Sinfonietta, and debuts with the Monroe, Pasadena, Knox-Galesburg, and Johnson City symphony orchestras. Her 2020-21 schedule includes an appearance with the Richmond Symphony in October 2020.
A first-prize laureate in the Sphinx Competition, she has performed with such leading U.S. ensembles as the Cleveland Orchestra, the Boston Pops, the Louisville Orchestra, and the Atlanta, Baltimore, Colorado, Detroit, and Pittsburgh symphony orchestras. Internationally, she has appeared as soloist with Poland’s Fillharmonia Dolnoslaska; with the Colombian Youth Orchestra in a tour of that country; and as a recitalist in Baku, Azerbaijian. Her film credits include a violin solo in the soundtrack to Jordan Peele’s 2019 psychological thriller Us.
Ms. White is a founding member of New York-based Harlem Quartet, where since 2006 her passion and artistry have contributed to performances that have been hailed for “bringing a new attitude to classical music, one that is fresh, bracing and intelligent” (Cincinnati Enquirer). Together with Harlem Quartet she has worked with such classical-music luminaries as Itzhak Perlman, Ida Kavakian, Paul Katz, and Anthony McGill; appeared in many of the country’s most prestigious venues, including Carnegie Hall, the White House, and the Kennedy Center; and performed throughout the U.S. as well as in Europe, Africa, Japan, and the United Kingdom.
In fall 2020 Ms. White joins the violin faculty at New York University’s Steinhardt Department of Music and Performing Arts Professions.
A native of Michigan, she holds performance degrees from the Curtis Institute of Music and New England Conservatory, where her teachers included Jaime Laredo, Ida Kavafian, Donald Weilerstein, and Miriam Fried. Her current instrument, “Matilda,” was commissioned as part of a Sphinx MPower Artist Grant in 2014 by the American violin maker Ryan Soltis.
In addition to her musical career, Ms. White has enjoyed practicing various styles of yoga for more than a decade, and completed training in both Vinyasa and Ashtanga at Sampoorna Yoga School in Goa, India. She is the co-founder of Intermission, a ground-breaking program that unites body, mind, breath, and music-making through yoga and meditation. Intermission comprises sessions for students, retreats for professionals, and an app for everyone.
Melissa White is represented worldwide by New York-based Sciolino Artist Management.
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