Two Chicago-area natives are appointed to the CSO

Two string players, Daniel Carson and Beatrice Chen, will join the Chicago Symphony Orchestra this fall.

Bassist Daniel Carson and violist Beatrice Chen will join the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on Sept. 19, the week the CSO begins its 2022-23 season. Their appointments were announced Aug. 30 by Music Director Riccardo Muti and the CSO.

Glenview native Carson comes to the CSO after serving as principal bass at the Alabama Symphony Orchestra from 2013 to 2016; he has performed with many other American orchestras, including those in Atlanta, St. Louis, Minnesota and Kansas City.

 An award-winning violist and Chicago native, Chen has won first prize in competitions including the Johansen International Competition for Young String Players and Albert M. Greenfield Competition.

At the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Carson was a fellow under Michael Tilson-Thomas, the ensemble's co-founder and artistic director laureate. Carson has also been a fellow at the Aspen Music Festival and School, the Music Academy of the West and the Tanglewood Music Center. Carson studied bass with Andrew Anderson, a member of Lyric Opera of Chicago and Grant Park Music Festival orchestras. Throughout high school, he was a member of the youth music program Midwest Young Artists Conservatory.

Carson earned a bachelor’s degree in performance from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where he studied with Lawrence Hurst and Bruce Bransby. Later, after studying with David Allen Moore of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Carson earned a master’s degree from the University of Southern California.

During 2022-23, Chen will make her debut with Philadelphia Orchestra in a family concert conducted by Lina González-Granados. As a solo violist, Chen has also performed on NPR’s “From the Top,” WFMT-FM and on the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series. 

As a member of the Chen String Quartet, she was featured in more than 100 virtual concerts since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020 (other members are Robert and Laura Chen, violins, and Noah Chen, cello).

In 2019, she was named a finalist and silver medalist in classical music from the National YoungArts Foundation. This summer, she was a member of the Grant Park Orchestra. She is pursuing her bachelor’s degree in viola performance at the Curtis Institute of Music, studying with Ed Gazouleas. 

As a Baroque violinist, Chen has performed with the Curtis Collegium and Choral Arts Philadelphia. She is pursuing a certificate in historical performance, studying with Cynthia Roberts, Leon Schelhase and Matthew Glandorf.

 Chen has participated in Music@Menlo and the Aspen Music Festival and School, studying with Victoria Chiang. She has served as principal violist of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra and the Curtis Symphony Orchestra. She currently plays on a 2015 viola by Keisuke Hori. 

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