B I O G R A P H Y
T H E L E E T R I O
Since its critically acclaimed Wigmore Hall debut in 2002, The Lee Trio's "gripping immediacy and freshness" and "rich palette of tone colours" [The Strad] continue to move audiences and critics around the globe. The Trio's awards include the Recording Prize at the Kuhmo International Chamber Music Competition in Finland, 2nd Prize in the G. Zinetti International Chamber Competition in Italy, and the Gotthard-Schierse-Stiftung grant in Berlin for rising international artists. In recent seasons, the Trio has given recitals and masterclasses in cities from Shanghai, Hong Kong, Taipei, San Francisco, New York and Toronto to London, Copenhagen, Berlin, Paris and Kiev. The Lee Trio has performed as soloist with orchestras such as the Shanghai Philharmonic, Kiev Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, Shenzhen Symphony and Macao Youth Symphony. The Trio's tours of China have included recitals and masterclasses in Hong Kong, Macao, Shenzhen, Hangzhou and Shanghai, at the Zhongshan Culture and Art Center, Hong Kong's City Hall Theatre and Lee Hysan Concert Hall, recordings for RTHK4, Hong Kong's classical broadcast radio, and a guest appearance on the televised program, Music of Friends.
The Lee Trio is passionate about working with and performing the music of living composers. As a recipient of San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music Musical Grant, The Lee Trio commissioned and premiered Nathaniel Stookey's Piano Trio No. 1 in 2009. Other piano trios by celebrated composers including Uljas Pulkkis, Philip Laser, Laurence Rosenthal, Julian Yu and Sylvie Bodorova have been given their world, American and European premieres by The Lee Trio. The Trio served as the first Ensemble-in-Residence of the Chelsea Music Festival in New York City, performing the world-premiere of Jane Antonia Cornish's Duende there in 2010. The Trio's recording of Duende was released on the Delos label in 2014 to critical acclaim. A new composition for the trio is in the works by Jerry Bilik, who has composed music for television series, Starsky and Hutch and Charlie’s Angels.
Educating the next generation of musicians is integral to the Trio's mission. In addition to giving masterclasses at schools and universities at home and abroad, the Trio regularly performs outreach and concerts in areas where the arts have little or no exposure, partnering with organizations like BRAVO Youth Orchestras or Music Camp International. The Trio was the first classical ensemble to perform for students at the Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy located in the heart of Las Vegas' most at-risk neighborhood. In 2011, the Trio took part in a humanitarian trip to teach music and work with underserved youth in Ukraine. Other schools visited in recent years include the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington, D.C. and the Oakland School for the Arts. Each member of The Lee Trio is a recipient of the California State Assembly Recognition for Exemplary Service to the Community. The members of The Lee Trio regularly work with musicians and chamber ensembles both young and established, and have served on the faculty of institutions such as Boston University, the BU Tanglewood Institute, San Francisco-based Young Chamber Musicians and the Zephyr International Chamber Music Festival in Italy.
In 2010, the Trio had the distinguished honor to perform for German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Leo Baeck Institute during her official visit to New York City and in 2014, was invited to perform for former Chancellor Helmut Schmidt to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the peaceful revolution and reunification of Germany. The members of The Lee Trio are graduates of The Curtis Institute, The Juilliard School, Yale and Harvard, the Guildhall School of Music & Drama and the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hannover. Lisa Lee plays on a 1872 Jean Baptiste Vuillaume; Angela Lee performs on a 1762 Nicolo Gagliano cello from Naples; Melinda Lee Masur is a Steinway Artist. To stay in touch with The Lee Trio, please visit facebook.com/theleetrio.