Director of the Loyola Chamber Orchestra, Extraordinary Professor
Passion, excitement, and innovation are the hallmarks of internationally acclaimed soloist and chamber musician Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg’s artistry. Praised for her compelling performances, daring interpretations and dedication to her craft, she is one of today’s leading violinists, renowned for her work on the concert stage, in the recording studio, and highly respected for her vision and guidance as music director of the San Francisco-based New Century Chamber Orchestra, which she joined in January 2008. With successful careers in both the solo and chamber music worlds, Nadja continues to enthrall audiences of all ages.
A powerful and creative presence on the recording scene, Nadja continues to add to the offerings of her own record label, NSS Music, which she started in 2005. The label’s roster of artists includes Ms. Salerno-Sonnenberg, pianist Anne-Marie McDermott, horn player John Cerminaro, pianist/composer Clarice Assad, conductor Marin Alsop, the American String Quartet, the Colorado Symphony, Orquestra Sinfonica do Estado de Sao Paulo, and the New Century Chamber Orchestra. In addition to her over twenty releases on the EMI and Nonesuch labels, Nadja has also made several recordings for NSS MUSIC (www.nssmusic.com), featuring both concerto and chamber pieces. The latest release, From A To Z (May 2014), is an all-commissions CD featuring violin concertos by Clarice Assad, William Bolcom, Michael Daugherty, and Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, all commissioned by New Century since Nadja joined the ensemble.
Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg’s exceptional artistry is paired with great musical intelligence which, along with her unique personality, have served her well in numerous environments – she has hosted the Backstage/Live from Lincoln Center program for PBS, appeared in the PBS/BBC series The Mind, and with Big Bird on Sesame Street. She was the subject of the 2000 Academy Award-nominated film, Speaking in Strings, an intensely personal documentary on her life, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, was released in theaters nationwide, and subsequently premiered on HBO’s Signatures channel in 1999. Included among her numerous television interviews and profiles are CBS’ 60 Minutes, 60 Minutes II, and Sunday Morning; CNN’s Newsstand; NBC’s National News and Newsstand; NBC’s National News and The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson; Bravo’s Arts & Minds; PBS’ Live from Lincoln Center, and The Charlie Rose Show. On the publishing front, Nadja: On My Way, her autobiography written for children discussing her experiences as a young musician building a career, was published by Crown Books in 1989. Nadja has appeared in numerous publications ranging from The Strad, Gramophone and Strings to The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Huffington Post, among many.
Ms. Salerno-Sonnenberg’s professional career began in 1981 when she won the Walter W. Naumburg International Violin Competition. In 1983 she was recognized with an Avery Fisher Career Grant, and in 1988 was Ovations Debut Recording Artist of the Year. In 1999, Nadja was honored with the prestigious Avery Fisher Prize, awarded to instrumentalists who have demonstrated “outstanding achievement and excellence in music.” In May of that same year, she was awarded an honorary Master of Musical Arts from the New Mexico State University, the first honorary degree the University has ever awarded. An American citizen, Ms. Salerno-Sonnenberg was born in Rome and emigrated to the United States at the age of eight to study at The Curtis Institute of Music. She later studied with Dorothy DeLay at The Juilliard School.
Loyola University New Orleans
College of Music and Media
6363 St. Charles Avenue
Campus Box #8
New Orleans, LA 70118