Matthew Charles Weiss graduated from the University of Washington School of Music in 1991 earning a degree in Violin Performance while studying with Steven Staryk and serving under the baton of Maestro Peter Erös. He previously studied violin with Walter Schwede, Gwen Thompson, Mara Dvonch, Emanuel Zetlin, Denes Zsigmondy, Mari Nakamura, and Dr. Shinichi Suzuki. Matt studied music theory and composition with Ken Benshoof, Diane Thome, and James Beale at the University of Washington and privately with William McGreal and James William Clarke who also instructed him in piano and conducting, and voice lessons from Jeffrey Moidel.
Matt is a strong supporter of the Suzuki Method, especially for young violinists wishing to develop all the skills they need to become successful musicians, students, and well-rounded human beings. Dr. Suzuki's method is based on the development of a deep love of classical music from a very early age. Children exposed to the Suzuki Method live and breathe great music absorbing it like a sponge in the same way that they learn their original spoken language or "Mother Tongue".
An active composer of classical music, Matt's largest work is his Concerto for Clarinet and Orchestra which was premiered by clarinet soloist Jeffrey Brooks in Seattle's beautiful Town Hall on Sunday, Feb 24th 2008. His "Sentimental Waltz" for Strings was premiered by the Octava Chamber Orchestra on Sunday May 3rd, 2009, and he recently published his Variations on "La Folia" with Editions Musica Ferrum. He is currently composing a rousing Symphonic Overture, a Concerto for Cello and orchestra, a handful of pieces for solo piano, and a prelude and fugue for woodwind quartet based on the Charukeshi Raga.
Matt has been a soloist with numerous orchestras including performances of the Brahms Violin Concerto in D major, Op.77, Sarasate's Zigeunerweisen, Op.20, No.1, the Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso in a minor Op. 28 by Camille Saint-Saëns, the Scottish Fantasy in E-flat major, op. 46 by Max Bruch, the Mozart Violin Concerto in G major No.3, KV 216, the Mozart Violin Concerto in D major No.4, the Mozart Violin Concerto in A major No.5, KV 219, the Bach Violin Concerto in E major, BWV 1042, the Bach Concerto for Two Violins in d minor, BWV 1043, the Bach Concerto in c minor for Oboe and Violin, BWV 1060, the Bach Concerto for 3 Violins in D major, BWV 1064, and the Corelli Concerto Grosso No. 8 in g minor (Christmas Concerto).
Matt is also the concertmaster of the Seattle Bach Cantata Society, assistant concertmaster of the Lake Union Civic Orchestra directed by Maestro Christophe Chagnard, the first violinist of the Trio Con Brio®, and has been the concertmaster of a number of orchestras including the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra with Maestro Nico Snell, the University of Washington Symphony Orchestra with Maestro Peter Erös, and the world-renowned Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra with Maestro Vilem Sokol.
Matt performed frequently in recital and in live radio broadcasts on Classical King FM 98.1 with pianist Joel Salsman. The repertoire included works of the great composers such as Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, etc. as well as contemporary Northwest Composers such as Alan Hovhaness, John Verrall, James Beale, Gloria Swisher, and others. Recently, he performed on King FM's Northwest Focus Live with Sean MacLean featuring Nathan Jensen's "Five Lenten Pieces for Violin and Piano", along with Nathan himself on piano.
Matt occassionally does session work in the Seattle area with local bands of various genres, his biggest claim to fame being part of the Grammy nominated triple-platinum album "Jar of Flies" by the Seattle grunge band Alice in Chains. Matt plays violin on "I Stay Away" and "Whale & Wasp".
Matt also has a keen interest in the classical and folk music of India and studied tabla from the world-renowned tabla virtuouso Vishal Nagar of the Delhi gharana, and appeared in recital with Vishal and Ujwal Nagar, performing a violin lehra in Charukeshi raga as Vishal and Ujwal presented a stunning tabla duet.
Matt also is a great fan of classic Star Trek, The Expanse, and other sci-fi and has been seen dressed up as Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, the young Obi-Wan Kenobi, and other characters, most notably in his YouTube romp "Charlie Matthews and the Cosmic Nebula Band" starring himself and his kids when they were young. He also plays gidder now and then with a cowboy hat and a fine pair of penguin shoes :)
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