HONG-MEI XIAO was the first-prize winner of the Geneva International Music Competition. Her extraordinary artistry and brilliant virtuoso technique have gained accolades from critics across the globe.
Winner of the coveted Patek Philippe Grand Prize, Ms. Xiao has established herself as a international performing artist in recitals and as soloist with orchestras. A seasoned performer, she has toured throughout Europe, North America, and the Far East, performing in major concert halls such as New York Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium, Alice Tully Hall, Berlin Philharmonie Hall, Geneva Victoria Hall, Zurich Tonhalle, Budapest State Opera House, Beijing National Concert Hall, Tokyo Suntory Hall, Hong Kong Cultural Center, Shanghai Concert Hall and Taipei National Concert Hall. She has appeared as soloist with renowned orchestras including L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, North German Radio Orchestra, Budapest Philharmonic, European Union Chamber Orchestra, Orchestergesellschaft Biel, Orchestra Sinfonica Siciliana, Israel Ra'anana Symphony, Russian Philharmonic, Orquesta Sinfónica del Estado de México, Budapest Symphony Orchestra MAV, Japan Philharmonic, Minnesota Orchestra, Aspen Music Festival Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony, and Taiwan Symphony.
Ms. Xiao held the honor of United States Artistic Ambassador during extensive concert tours of Europe. Her performances and interviews have been broadcast on television and radio throughout Europe, Asia and North America. Her concert recording of Frank Martin's Ballade for Viola and Orchestra has been heard on over five hundred radio stations worldwide. As a special guest soloist, Ms. Xiao was invited to give the premiere performance of Alfred Schnittke's Viola Concerto with L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande in Geneva. The success of her performance was acclaimed by all three major newspapers in Geneva. The Geneva Tribune heralded her as the "ideal interpreter of the music". As a sought after chamber music performer, she has collaborated with internationally celebrated artists such as Yo-Yo Ma, Joseph Silverstein and Cho-Liang Lin. Ms. Xiao was the featured artist for the Annual William Primrose Memorial Concert. She has also been invited to serve as an adjudicator for numerous International Viola Competitions including the Lionel Tertis International Viola Competition in the United Kingdom.
Ms. Xiao is the featured soloist in the world premiere recording of the original and revised versions of the Bartok Viola Concerto. This recording with the Budapest Philharmonic has won rave critical reviews worldwide. Her CD of Complete Works for Viola and Orchestra by Ernest Bloch features her own transcription of the Baal Shem Suite. It has received the “Critic’s Choice Award” from American Record Guide, which praised her performance with “the solo playing is spectacular on all counts.” Ms. Xiao’s newest CD, released to international critical acclaim, is Works for Viola and Orchestra by English Composers with the Budapest Symphony. It includes the world premiere of Viola Concerto by William Walton (2002 edition) and was released by Delos.
Born into a musical family in China, Ms. Xiao began her violin study with her father, Xiao Heng, a well-known composer. During the years of her musical training, she was frequently engaged in public performances in China. After graduating from the Shanghai Conservatory with highest honors, she was distinguished as the only musician in Asia to receive the Asian Cultural Council Award. She completed her musical training in the United States with violist John Graham and received her Master of Music degree from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
Ms. Xiao is Professor Emeritus at the University of Arizona School of Music and Guest Professor at China Conservatory in Beijing. Previously she was a faculty member at the University of Michigan and has taught at the Eastman School of Music as a visiting professor.