Jessica Mathaes, Concertmaster
Hailed “a violinist like no other” (The New York Times) and “a master of the Khachaturian violin concerto” (Austin Chronicle), Jessica Mathaes enjoys an international career as a soloist, recording artist, educator and concertmaster.
As a guest concertmaster, Mathaes has lead the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, and the West Australian Symphony Orchestra. She has also been engaged with the Rochester Philharmonic, Houston Grand Opera, Houston Ballet, San Antonio Symphony, and Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestras. In 2005 at the age of 25, Mathaes was appointed concertmaster of the Austin Symphony, becoming both the youngest and first female concertmaster of the orchestra in its over 100-year history.
As a soloist, Mathaes has been broadcast live on Performance Today and Chicago Public Radio, and has performed throughout Singapore on a solo and masterclass tour sponsored by the US Embassy. She has also performed as a soloist with the Austin, Victoria, Bismarck-Mandan, Round Rock, Northwest Iowa, Masterworks, and National Music Festival Orchestras. She has premiered works by many American composers including Pierre Jalbert and Paul Reale, and has released solo albums on the Naxos and Centaur labels to critical acclaim in Gramophone.
Born in Chicago, Mathaes grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, where she was concertmaster of the Omaha Area Youth Orchestra and made her solo debut at age 16 playing the Saint-Saens Violin Concerto No. 3. She was also an award-winning pianist in her youth. Mathaes holds performance degrees from Rice University, where she graduated magna cum laude.