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.
She 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.
Melissa has always had a passion for teaching and firmly believes that music has the
power to inspire, heal and connect people. 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.
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. Her years teaching in Pasadena
were the most rewarding up to that point, both as a musician and as a teacher. Working
with a variety of wonderful children and their families – whether they just played the
cello for the joy of it or went on to major in music in college – was inspiring, fascinating,
and fulfilling every day.
Ms. Solomon has worked as an instructor at the Colorado Suzuki Institute, the Lone
Star Young Artists Program at DFW WOW Suzuki Institute, Intermountain Suzuki
String Institute, the Suzuki Strings by the Bay summer institute in Berkeley, National
Cello Institute Winter workshop in Pomona and other workshops in Texas. She gained
all her Suzuki teacher training at the Colorado and Chicago Suzuki Institutes with
Pamela Devenport, Nancy Hair, Sally Gross. Carol Tarr and Jean Dexter, and the
Pasadena Conservatory of Music with Rick Mooney. 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.
After well over a decade in California, Melissa now lives in Austin, TX with her
Brazilian husband and two delightful children aged 5 and 3. When she is not teaching,
she loves to write, think about and discuss all sorts of ideas and topics with friends, and
most of all, spend precious time with her family.