Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, Melissa Solomon came from a family of professional musicians and developed an early passion for music.
She immigrated to the United States after receiving a full scholarship to study at Interlochen Arts Academy and graduated 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.
While she was studying at Juilliard, she participated in the Juilliard’s Community Fellowship Program, bringing music to diverse audiences throughout the New York metropolitan area. Melissa has performed in the United States, Europe and South Africa, including New York, London, Florence, Edinburgh, Johannesburg and Cape Town. She has appeared at music festivals, among them the Accademia Chigiana (Italy), the Edinburgh International Festival (Scotland), the Bucknell Quartet Program (Pennsylvania) and the Franschoek Chamber Music Festival (South Africa). Highlights included 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 de Priest.
Melissa has always had a passion for teaching and firmly believes that music has the power to inspire, heal and connect people. She developed a thriving private teaching studio in Pasadena, CA and started the cello program at Suzuki Talent Education of Pasadena. Later, she founded Project C.E.L.L.O where she directed her cello orchestra and ensembles.
Ms. Solomon has worked as an instructor at the Alaska Cello Intensive, the National Cello Institute Winter workshop in Pomona, the Lone Star Young Artists Program in Dallas, Colorado Suzuki Institute, DFW WOW Suzuki Institute, Intermountain Suzuki String Institute, the Suzuki Strings by the Bay summer institute in Berkeley, and has given masterclasses at numerous other workshops in Texas. She gained all her teacher training with Pamela Devenport, Nancy Hair, Sally Gross, Carol Tarr and Jean Dexter, and Rick Mooney.
After well over a decade in California, Melissa now lives in Austin, TX. When she is not teaching or playing the cello, she loves to write, ride bikes with her two delightful children aged 7 and 5 and their rambunctious black lab, and spend precious time with family and friends discussing all sorts of ideas, playing games and laughing together.