Described by The Strad Magazine as a musician whose "tonal distinction and essential
musicality produced an auspicious impression", Taiwanese-American violist Che-Yen Chen
(also known as "Brian Chen") has established himself as a prominent recitalist, chamber,
and orchestral musician. He is the first-prize winner of the 2003 William Primrose Viola
Competition, and the "President prize" of the 2003 Lionel Tertis Viola Competition. Currently
the principal violist of San Diego Symphony, Mr. Chen has appeared as guest principal violist
with Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, and Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra.
A founding member of the Formosa Quartet, the first prize and the Amadeus prize winner of the
10th London International String Quartet Competition, Mr. Chen is an advocate of chamber music.
He is a member of San Diego based Myriad Trio, Camera Lucida, a former member of Lincoln Center
Chamber Music Society Two, and has toured with Musicians from Marlboro after three consecutive
summers at the Marlboro Music Festival. Other chamber festival appearances include the Kingston
Chamber Music Festival, Ravinia, Mainly Mozart, Chamber Music International, La Jolla SummerFest,
Seattle Chamber Music Society Summer Festival, Taiwan Connection, and numerous others. Mr. Chen
has also taught and performed at summer programs such as Hotchkiss Summer Portal, Academy of
Taiwan Strings, Interlochen, Mimir Festival, and has given master-classes at the Taiwan National
Arts University, University of Missouri Kansas City, University of Southern California, University
of California Santa Barbara, McGill University, and The Juilliard School.
Mr. Chen began studying viola at the age of six with Ben Lin. A four-time winner of the National
Viola Competition in Taiwan, Mr. Chen came to the US and studied at The Curtis Institute of Music
and The Juilliard School under the guidance of Michael Tree, Joseph de Pasquale, and Paul Neubauer.