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Wanzhen Li - Live from Studio A

Violinist Wanzhen Li performs in IPR's Studio A

Interlochen Alumna Wanzhen Li returned to the area and paid a visit to Interlochen Public Radio, where she played Eugene Ysaye's " Violin Sonata No. 4."

Born in Xi’an, China, violinist Wanzhen Li has been described as having “established a sense of nostalgia … that provided a framework for the musical journey. Her tone seemed to cry. It was great playing; fun to hear.” (The Boston Globe). She has appeared as a soloist with the Binghamton Philharmonic (New York), Guilford Symphony (North Carolina), Grosse Point Symphony (Michigan) and Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra. She won first prizes in the Detroit Bohemians, the Eastern Music Festival, and the Interlochen Arts Academy Concerto Competitions.

In January of 2014, Wanzhen is invited to perform a solo recital at The Kristy and James H. Clark Arts Center, as part of the Perlman Music Program’s Alumni recital series. Last season, she soloed with Xi’an Symphony Orchestra (China), and served as their guest concertmaster. Wanzhen performs frequently with violinist Itzhak Perlman and has accompanied him to Israel, Florida and Vermont for residencies with The Perlman Music Program. She also performs frequently with ensembles such as the New York Chamber Soloists and the New York Classical Players.

As a soloist and chamber musician, she performs in venues including Rose Hall of Lincoln Center, Peter J. Sharp Theater, The Metropolitan Museum, Alice Tully Hall, Hunter College in New York, Jordan Hall in Boston, Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in Florida, Chicago Symphony Hall, Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center, Vermont, Princeton University, and Tel Aviv University.

In past seasons, Wanzhen has performed solo recitals at the New England Conservatory of Music and chamber music during The Perlman Music Program’s Stowe Residency. In 2012, she was invited by pianist Lars Vogt to the chamber music festival of “Spannungen: Musik im Krafwerk Heimbach” in Germany, where she collaborated with renowned performers including Christian Tetzlaff, Alban Gerhardt, Gustav Rivinius, Tanja Tetzlaff, among others. The live performance at Spannungen was recorded and released by Avi-Music record label.

An active chamber musician, Wanzhen has performed at festivals including Yellow Barn, Kneisel Hall, and The Perlman Music Program’s Chamber Music Workshop. She also appeared on the First Monday Series at Jordan Hall, Boston by invitation of cellist Laurence Lesser. Wanzhen has shared the stage with many of the world’s celebrated artists including Anthony Marwood, Paul Katz, Peter Frankl, members of the Juilliard String Quartet, the Peabody Trio, the Cavani Quartet, and musicians from the New York Philharmonic. Her solo and chamber performances have also been broadcast on German radio “Deutschlandfunk” and IPR-Interlochen public radio.

During her studies, Wanzhen led the Juilliard Orchestra and New England Conservatory Philharmonia as the concertmaster for performances under the batons of Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Nicholas McGegan, Anne Manson, Benjamin Zander and Yu Feng, at venues including Boston’s Jordan Hall, New York’s Alice Tully Hall, Peter J. Sharp Theater, and Beijing’s National Centre for the Performing Arts. Wanzhen started playing the violin at age 4 under the tutelage of her parents, who are both professional violinists.

At age 14, she came to the United States to study at the Interlochen Arts Academy with Hal Grossman. As a Jerome L. Greene Fellow, she went on to study at The Juilliard School with Ronald Copes and Donald Weilerstein. She recently graduated from New England Conservatory in Boston, and has also been mentored by Itzhak Perlman.

Wanzhen plays on a 1756 Gennaro Gagliano violin generously on loan to her from a private collector in Michigan. She resides in New York City.