Beethoven + Strauss
2019/20 Beethoven In Focus
Canadian violist Sharon Wei is a dynamic and varied musician, establishing herself as one of the most respected violists on the scene today.
Wei has appeared as soloist, chamber musician, and guest principal violist throughout North America and Europe. She has been guest principal violist of the Cincinnati Symphony, Canadian Opera Company, Verbier Chamber Orchestra, and Ensemble Matheus in Paris performing with conductors such as Paavo Järvi, Kent Nagano, Zubin Mehta, Jean Christophe Spinosi and Yuri Termirkanov. Sharon has performed in chamber music settings with musicians including James Ehnes, Lynn Harrell, Gary Hoffman, Claude Frank, Joseph Silverstein, Scott St John, Joel Quarrington, Jonathan Crow, Trio Arkel, and St. Lawrence String Quartets. She has appeared at festivals such as Verbier, Marlboro, Seattle Chamber Music, Prussia Cove, Banff, and Ravinia. In 2020 she performs on a Musicians from Marlboro National Tour and in 2021 she will appear on their East Coast Tour.
Sharon co-founded the piano quartet Ensemble Made in Canada. Winner of a 2006 CBC rising stars award, EMIC is currently Ensemble-in-Residence at Western University. They have released 2 critically acclaimed CDs and are strong advocates of new music. Their recent Mosaïque Project commissioned 14 Canadian composers to write a new musical suite which was heard in every Canadian province and territory spanning over 50 performances. They collected over 3000 pieces of audience-generated art and performed in unique locations such as the ocean floor at low tide at Hopewell Rocks to St Jude’s Igloo church in Nunavut.
Sharon has been the recipient of grants through the Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, FACTOR and SSHRC. She has given recital tours under the auspices of Debut Atlantic and Prairie Debut and won the viola prize at Yale University. She has appeared as concerto soloist with orchestras such as Symphony of the Redwoods, Kingston Symphony, Sinfonia Toronto, and San Francisco Chamber Orchestra
Sharon was on faculty at Yale and Stanford University and is currently Associate Professor at Western University. She is regularly on faculty at Curtis Institute’s Summerfest, Orford Academy of Music and Scotia festival of Music. She has given masterclasses at the American Viola Society Festival, Beijing Conservatory and universities across North America. At Western Sharon has created a course for performance majors in which students learn off-stage initiatives such as networking, grant writing, website design, and managing finances.