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Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, Melissa Solomon grew up in a family of professional musicians, sparking her early passion for both performance and teaching. During high school, she earned a full scholarship to study at Interlochen Arts Academy in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She later immigrated to the United States, graduating from the Juilliard School in New York City, where she studied cello with Timothy Eddy and chamber music with Robert Mann, Earl Carlyss, and Jonathan Feldman.

Melissa believes that music has the power to inspire, heal, and connect people, a belief that fuels her dedication to teaching. While in New York City, she participated in Juilliard’s Community Fellowship Program, bringing music to diverse audiences across the metropolitan area.

Following her graduation from Juilliard and a move to Pasadena, California, Melissa established the Melissa Solomon Cello Studio, which quickly became a vibrant community. She founded the cello program at Suzuki Talent Education of Pasadena (STEP) and created Project C.E.L.L.O., an innovative course in performance education.

Melissa's commitment to professional development is evident in her faculty roles at various prestigious programs, including the Alaska Cello Intensive, National Cello Institute at Pomona College, Lone Star Young Artists Program in Dallas, Colorado Suzuki Institute, DFW WOW Suzuki Institute, Intermountain Suzuki String Institute in Utah, Chicago Music Institute workshops, Suzuki Strings by the Bay in Berkeley, and Nevada School of the Arts Summer Strings Camp. She regularly offers master classes at workshops throughout Texas.

A fully trained and registered Suzuki teacher, Melissa's training was guided by renowned Suzuki Teacher-trainers Pamela Devenport, Nancy Hair, Sally Gross, Carol Tarr, Jean Dexter, and Rick Mooney. She has been a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas since 2005.

In addition to her teaching, Melissa has a deep love for performing chamber music. She has appeared across the United States, Europe, and South Africa, with notable performances in New York, London, Florence, Edinburgh, Johannesburg, and Cape Town. Her festival appearances include the Accademia Chigiana (Italy), Edinburgh International Festival (Scotland), Bucknell Quartet Program (Pennsylvania), and Franschoek Chamber Music Festival (South Africa). Highlights of her career include a solo recital at Lincoln Center’s Paul Hall (NY), performances at the Spoleto Festival dei Due Mondi (Italy), and leading the Juilliard Symphony celli at Carnegie Hall (NY) under the baton of James DePreist.

Melissa resides in South Austin, Texas, where she teaches private lessons, directs her South Austin Cello Choir, and coaches chamber music. Outside of her musical pursuits, she loves writing, wood-carving, drawing, hiking, and camping with her partner and two children, ages 13 and 11, and their two dogs. She cherishes time spent with family and friends, engaging in thoughtful discussions, playing games, and sharing laughter.

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