Ni Mei joined the Chicago Symphony Orchestra as fourth chair second violin in 2009. She came to the CSO from the Detroit Symphony, where she previously was a member of the first violin section. A native of China, Mei began playing violin at the age of 6. Her first teacher was her father, concertmaster and later music director of the Wuhan Symphony Orchestra. At 10 years old, she entered the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, where she studied for 11 years under Duoqin Xu, Shisheng Zheng and Zhinuo Ding.
Ni Mei came to the United States to continue her violin studies at Pittsburg State University and at Rice University, where she studied with Kathleen Winkler. During her years of study, she won Pittsburg State’s Concerto-Aria Competition, the Waddill Chamber Music Competition, and first prize in the Young Texas Artists Competition. She also was concertmaster of the Southeast Kansas Orchestra, associate concertmaster of the Ohio Light Opera and a member of the Houston Symphony Orchestra.