Lauded as one of today's probing musical voices, violinist Nancy Zhou is rapidly building an international profile after winning the 2018 Shanghai Isaac Stern Violin Competition. With a robust online presence that seeks to invigorate appreciation for the art and science of the violin, her thoughtful musicianship resonates with a global audience in such a way that brings her on stage with leading orchestras around the world.
Making her orchestral debut at the age of 13 with her hometown orchestra, the San Antonio Symphony, Nancy went on to collaborate with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, Finnish Radio Symphony, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, China National Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, San Diego Symphony, Padua Chamber Orchestra, among others. Upcoming engagements include performances with the China Philharmonic, Hangzhou Symphony, Sichuan Symphony, National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of Perugia, and the IRIS Orchestra in Tennessee. She has collaborated with conductors such as Jaap van Zweden, Sakari Oramo, Hanny Lintu, Eun Sun Kim, Peter Oundjian, Christoph Poppen, Jean-Jacques Kantorow, Gilbert Varga, Michael Stern, Darrell Ang, Jurjen Hempel, Muhai Tang, Sebastian Lang-Lessing, and Ken-David Masur.
Alongside undertaking projects as a soloist, Nancy holds interest in chamber music and in providing guidance to young musicians. As a collaborator, she has performed at the Verbier Festival, Ravinia Festival, Tongyeong Music Festival, Festpiele Mecklenburg- Vorpormmern, Festival de Coimbra, and the Marvão Festival, with upcoming performances at the Paganini Genova Festival. In 2017, she was invited by the Encore Chamber Music Festival to serve as guest artist and faculty member. She is a regular guest educator in Taiwan, holding masterclasses at various institutions and conducting private classes. Since the spring of 2020, Nancy devotes time to a private online studio, teaching a number of students across the globe and presenting public group classes on fundamental training and cultivating mindful awareness.
Born in Texas to Chinese immigrant parents, Nancy began the violin at age four under the guidance of her father. She went on to study with Miriam Fried at the New England Conservatory while pursuing her interest in literature and subsequently earning a Bachelor’s of Arts at Harvard College. An Associated Artist of the Queen Elisabeth Chapel, where she studied with Augustin Dumay, Nancy has also received generous support by Anne-Sophie Mutter.
Nancy plays on a Joseph Guarneri violin from 1730-33 known as the “Le Sphynx”, generously on loan to her from a private sponsor.