Gabrielle Després, violin
Canadian-born violinist Gabrielle Després is the winner of numerous competitions, most recently First Prize in the 2022 Juilliard Concerto Competition, First Prize in the 2020 Irving M. Klein International String Competition, and Second Prize in the 2021 Shean Strings Competition. In 2020, she was included in CBC’s annual list of 30 Hot Canadian Classical Musicians under 30.
From a young age, she has competed nationally, winning top prizes in the Canadian Music Competition in both violin and piano. In 2016, she was featured on Radio-Canada’s nationwide television show Virtuose, placing second out of 24 young Canadian artists. As a soloist, she has performed with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and the Chamber Orchestra of Edmonton. In 2021, she served as concertmaster of the Juilliard Orchestra, performing Strauss' Ein Heldenleben under the baton of Sir Antonio Pappano. Most recently, Gabrielle performed the Korngold Violin Concerto in her debut as soloist with the Juilliard Orchestra.
An avid chamber musician, she has recently performed with the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players and in the Music in the Vineyards festival. In 2021, she formed a piano trio with cellist Michael Cantú and pianist Umi Garrett and since then, they have given performances in Lincoln Center and in Juilliard’s residency at Chelsea Factory. Passionate about community engagement, Gabrielle has spent the past year performing as a Gluck Community Engagement Fellow, working with her piano trio and two actors to create interactive programs that merge music and drama to share across various hospitals and nursing homes throughout New York City.
Gabrielle recently received a Bachelor of Music degree at The Juilliard School, where she studied with Masao Kawasaki and Joseph Lin. She also studied the baroque violin under the direction of Robert Mealy in 2021. Her teachers have included Robert Uchida and James Keene. She will return to Juilliard this fall as a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship as she begins her pursuit of a Master of Music degree, studying with Catherine Cho and Donald Weilerstein. Gabrielle has spent her summers studying at the Orford Summer Music Academy, Morningside Music Bridge, the Casalmaggiore International Music Festival, the Domaine Forget de Charlevoix International Music Academy, and the Aspen Music Festival.
She is currently performing on a Pietro Guarneri 1721 violin, on loan from The Juilliard School.
She gratefully acknowledges the generosity of the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, the Anne Burrows Music Foundation, and the Edmonton Community Foundation in supporting her education.