Stony Brook University, MM
Stony Brook University, DMA
Cellist So Sugiyama started his musical studies at the age of three and enrolled at the Colburn School of Performing Arts at the age of eight. While at Colburn, So performed as the Principal cellist for the Colburn Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra Da Camera, and as the cellist for the Honors Quartet program led by his former teacher, and Director of the Chamber Music Institute, Dr. Richard Naill.
In 2012, So graduated from Columbia University as a John Jay National Scholar with a bachelor’s degree in philosophy while concurrently studying cello with George Neikrug in Boston, MA. While at Columbia, So performed in venues such as Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, Miller Theatre at Columbia, Harvard Musical Association, and Steinway and Sons Gallery in Washington D.C.
In recent years, So has performed in masterclasses for Richard Aaron, Darrett Adkins, David Finckel, Matt Haimovitz, Bonnie Hampton, Wu Han, Desmond Hoebig, Eric Kim, Robert McDonald, Michael Mermagen, Brinton Smith, Alicia Weilerstein, Donald Weilerstein, Vivian Weilerstein, and members of the Tokyo, Brentano, and Shanghai Quartets.
Recently, So completed his master’s of music at Stony Brook University as a graduate scholarship student of Colin Carr. At Stony Brook, So studied chamber music with the Emerson String Quartet and David Finckel and he recently won the 2015 Lauren V. Ackerman Chamber Music Competition at Stony Brook as a member of Trio Noumena. As a member of the Emanio Quartet, So was recently invited by the Yale School of Music to perform for distinguished music educators across the country at the opening concert of the 2015 Symposium on Music in Schools . So was also selected to partake in a teaching residency at the Sundermann Conservatory of Music at Gettysburg College as a member of the Stony Brook Contemporary Ensemble. Other recent engagements include performing at the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C. as a guest member of the Phillips Camerata. In the fall of 2015, So will be continuing at Stony Brook as a full-scholarship DMA candidate and teaching assistant.
During the summers, So attends the Aspen Music Festival and School, where he was recently selected as one of two cellists to receive a Talented Students in the Arts Initiative (TSAI) Orchestral String Mentor-Fellowship, studying under Richard Aaron and Brinton Smith and serving as Co-Principal of the Aspen Philharmonic Orchestra. So was also selected to teach in the Aspen Music Festival Passes and Lessons Scholarship (P.A.L.S )Teaching Program where he will be giving weekly lessons to local music students. Other teaching engagements in the past include being selected as an artist-faculty at the Utah Festival of Music and School.
So plays on a contemporary cello made by Joseph Grubaugh and Sigrun Seifert and a bow by F.C. Neuveville, both generously loaned by the Virtu Foundation.