An ICS biography

Hai-Ye Ni

Hai-Ye Ni was the youngest recipient of the first prize in the history of the Naumburg International Cello Competition, and made her New York recital debut to great critical acclaim at age 19 at Alice Tully Hall in 1991. After her move the USA from China she won the 1995 Sony ES Career Award, and the prize for Best Performance of Tchaikovsky at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, a performance broadcast on the PBS documentary of the competition. In 1996 Ms. Ni took First Prize in the International Paulo Cello Competition, Finland, winning over a crowded field as the unanimous choice of the jury, from which followed her first solo CD, on the Naxos label. The next year she won second prize in the Rostropovich Competition in France, and was the cover story for the May/June issue of Strings magazine. In 1999 she was appointed associate principal cellist for the New York Philharmonic.

Ms. Ni has appeared as soloist with many of the world’s leading orchestras including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra with Christoph Eschenbach conducting, the orchestras of San Francisco, Houston, Buffalo, Vancouver, Hong Kong, Singapore, Odense (Denmark), the Finnish Radio Symphony and the Vienna Chamber Orchestra. A highlight of her concerto career was a tour in 1997 of 14 cities in the USA introducing a new cello concerto by Bright Shang, capped by a televised performance on CBS Sunday Morning.

On her international recital tours, as a member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center II, and as a frequent participant in the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, she has performed with artists such as Pinchas Zukerman, Cho-Liang Lin, David Shifrin, Jean-Ives Thibaudet, Joshua Bell, Emanuel Pahud, Leonidas Kavakos, Barry Douglas and Ida Kavafian.

Born in Shanghai in 1972, Ms. Ni began her cello studies with her mother and later studied at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. She continued her musical education with Irene Sharp at the San Francisco Conservatory, Joel Krosnick at the Juilliard School, and William Pleeth in London.