Nancy Zhou


Lauded as one of today's probing musical voices, Chinese-American violinist Nancy Zhou is the winner of the 2018 Shanghai Isaac Stern Violin Competition. With a robust online presence that seeks to invigorate appreciation for the art and science of the violin, her thoughtful musicianship resonates with a global audience in such a way that brings her on stage with leading orchestras around the world.

Making her orchestral debut at the age of 13 with her hometown orchestra, the San Antonio Symphony, the violinist went on to collaborate with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, Finnish Radio Symphony, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Kansas City Symphony, San Diego Symphony, Padua Chamber Orchestra, among others. She has collaborated with conductors such as Jaap van Zweden, Sakari Oramo, Hannu Lintu, Eun Sun Kim, Peter Oundjian, Christoph Poppen, Jean-Jacques Kantorow, Michael Stern, and Darrell Ang.

Alongside undertaking projects as a soloist, Nancy holds interest in chamber music and in providing guidance to young musicians. As a collaborator, she has performed at the Tanglewood Music Festival, Verbier Festival, Ravinia Festival, BronisÅ‚aw Huberman Festival, Tongyeong Music Festival, Festpiele Mecklenburg- Vorpormmern, Festival de Coimbra, and the Marvão Festival, and the Paganini Genova Festival. In 2017, she was invited by the Encore Chamber Music Festival to serve as guest artist and faculty member. She is a regular guest educator in Taiwan, holding masterclasses at various institutions and conducting private classes. Since the spring of 2020, the violinist devotes time to a private online studio, teaching a number of students across the globe and presenting public group classes on fundamental training and cultivating mindful awareness critical to performance.

This season will see the violinist explore works outside the traditional classical oeuvre, a gesture which both emboldens her personal heritage and holds relevance to the global order. Chinese composer Zhao Jiping’s first violin concerto will be performed with the New Jersey Symphony and Maestra Xian Zhang at the Lincoln Center and Ukrainian composer Alexey Shor’s “Phantasms” with the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra. The violinist will also present the latter work upon her return to Italy, as part of the newfound Accordi Musicali Festival, and subsequently appear in performances with the Würzburg Philharmonic in Germany, under the baton of Enrico Calesso.

Born in Texas to Chinese immigrant parents, Nancy Zhou began the violin at age four under the guidance of her father. She went on to study with Miriam Fried at the New England Conservatory while pursuing her interest in literature and subsequently earning a Bachelor’s of Arts at Harvard University. An Associated Artist of the Queen Elisabeth Chapel, where she studied with Augustin Dumay, Nancy has also received generous support by Anne-Sophie Mutter and the Anne-Sophie Mutter Foundation.


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