Clara Lee, violin

Clara J. Lee , a recent winner of the Canada Council’s Music Instrument bank competition, has been praised by the South Florida Classical Review for her “gorgeous intonation and phrasing” and “the crystal purity of her tone and flawless execution of fearfully difficult effects”. She made her debut at the age of 11 performing with the Toronto Philharmonia Orchestra. Since then, she has been touring and performing across North America and Asia as a soloist, chamber musician and concertmaster, where her performances have been broadcasted on major stations such as WQXR. Clara is a graduate of the Juilliard School as a full-scholarship student under the tutelage of Joel Smirnoff, Donald Weilerstein and Kyung-wha Chung. 

Ms. Lee has won many competitions such as First prize at the Canadian Music Competition in all ages and instrument categories.

Ms. Lee was a soloist with the New World Symphony in Miami upon winning the Concerto Competition where she was given a 1734 Antonio Stradivarius violin as part of the prize. In 2013, Ms. Lee had the honor of performing for Elliott Carter’s memorial concert at (le) Poisson Rouge in New York City with pianist Ursula Oppens and members of Ensemble LPR of the late composer’s Quintet for Piano and Strings.

Ms. Lee’s concerts in North America have brought her to a number of venues including Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, David Geffen Hall, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Suntory Hall, Roy Thomson Hall, New World Center, the Glenn Gould Studio and many more. She has performed with renowned artists such as Anne­Marie McDermott, Pamela Frank, Hilary Hahn, Jerome Lowenthal, Fred Sherry, members of the Takacs Quartet, Berlin Philharmonic, and Vienna Philharmonic.

Ms. Lee’s versatility has led to collaborations with Storm Large from Pink Martini, Italian pop opera trio, “Il Volo” as well as performing alongside classical cross-over soprano superstar, Jackie Evancho, The Priests, The Airborne Toxic Event, and the Matt Herskowitz Jazz trio. She has also recorded on movie soundtracks for film composer, Michael Bacon, brother of movie star Kevin Bacon. 

In past summers, she has appeared at Sarasota Music Festival in Florida, as well as being awarded fellowships for Music Academy of the West Summer Festival in California and the Pacific Music Festival in Japan, where she served as concertmaster for Leonard Bernstein’s 70th Anniversary concert.

Ms. Lee is currently a member of the Canadian Opera Company and has regular engagements with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in New York City, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Hollywood Chamber Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony, Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra, Sarasota Opera, and the Britt Music Festival.

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