Assoc Prof YST Conservatory of Music, NUS
American Violinist Zuo Jun was born in a musical family in China. Hailed as one of the most gifted Chinese violinists of his generation, Zuo has been a prizewinner in prominent national and international competitions, including the silver medal of the National Violin Competition of China in 1984, the special prize for the best performance of Chinese work, and the first prize in the China National Violin Competition in Shanghai in 1986. Also, he was awarded prizes in the Kingsville International Music Competition in 1990, the Audience prize of the American Music Teacher’s National Association Competition in 1989, and the Corpus Christi Young Artists Competition in 1989. In 1984, Zuo Jun was invited by the China Ministry of Culture to perform in Beijing’s People Conference Hall to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China. In the same year, he gave a solo recital as part of “Spring of Shanghai” music festival.
Zuo began violin studies at age six and is a graduate of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music where he studied with Professors Shen Guan En and Zheng Shi Sheng. In 1988, Zuo Jun’s talent was noticed by Fredell Lack and he won the full scholarship to study with her at the University of Houston and subsequently with Berl Senofsky and Ariana Bronne.
Zuo has been a first violinist of world-class symphony orchestras–Houston Symphony and San Francisco Symphony for more than eleven years. Zuo has also appeared as soloist with many renowned symphony orchestras, such as Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Jupiter Symphony Orchestra (New York), Julius Grossman Orchestra (New York), Shanghai Ballet Orchestra, National Repertory Orchestra (Colorado), Shanghai Radio Orchestra, San Antonio Youth Symphony, the Shanghai Opera Orchestra, Lake Charles Symphony Orchestra, and New Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. Macau Symphony, Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra, Xiamen Philharmonic.
Critics have praised Zuo Jun’s performances for his musicality and technical brilliance. He was featured on “Good Morning America” (ABC) in 1990, interviewed by NHK in 1987, and he has been invited for interviews and live performances by the Public Broadcast Station of Houston (United States) in 2008 and 2010, Zuo was invited by former Defense Minister of Singapore to perform in Victoria Concert Hall, and live performance on Singapore National Television channel in 1986, and he was interviewed by the Channel 8 “Good Morning Singapore” in 2004 and Singapore’s classical music radio station 92.4FM. Zuo recorded “the Inspiration” solo CD which was released in late 2010. This CD features the works of Sarasate, Ravel and Tchaikovsky and others.
Zuo Jun currently is an associate professor and the head of violin studies of Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music, he also is a guest Professor at the Wuhan Conservatory. Zuo became a permanent faculty member of the Texas Music Festival in 2007, he is also invited as a faculty member of the Schlern International Music Festival in Italy since 2010 and Saarburg International music festival, Germany. In 2016, as a founder and artistic director, he has established the 1st Yilan International Music Festival in Taiwan. He has been invited as artistic director of 1st Qing Yuan International Music Festival in Guangzhou, China.