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Chelsea Starbuck Smith

Chelsea Starbuck Smith

Biography

Acclaimed as a violinist of “compelling presence, fearless attack, and technical aplomb and bravado” (New London’s The Day), Chelsea Starbuck Smith is a young artist becoming recognized for her infectious enthusiasm for the violin. She has performed as solo and chamber artist in venues across the United States and abroad, including David Geffen Hall, Elbphilharmonie, Musikverein Wien, Alice Tully Hall, Citi Field, Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall, Palais de Fontainebleau in France, and Centre National des Arts in Ottawa.

As a chamber and orchestral musician, Chelsea is at home with both classical and crossover styles. Recent collaborators include Baz Luhrmann for the Met Gala 2019, Chris Thile of the Punch Brothers, Kelly Clarkson, Debbie Harry & Blondie, and The Knights Chamber Orchestra. Chelsea is a section-member of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular orchestra pit and served as concertmaster for Broadway’s A Christmas Carol and Rocktopia. She is also one-half of the crossover violin duo, Les Deux, and has been hailed as “unarguably gifted with a keen ear for arranging” by the New York Examiner. In 2015 the duo dazzled Citi Field with their original arrangement of the Star-Spangled Banner at a New York Mets home game.

Chelsea recently made solo appearances with the Spoleto Festival USA Orchestra in Charleston, SC, and the Southern Finger Lakes Orchestra in Corning, NY. Her solo debut in 2013 with the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra performing Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto was called a “show-stopper,” and she was described by music critic Milton Moore as “dominating the stage and electrifying her audience with her high-powered and knowing performance.”

Beyond the concert stage, Chelsea can be seen in such television series as Glee and, perhaps most recognizably, as the featured violinist in the long-running NYU Langone national television commercial set in New York’s Grand Central Station. Other appearances include American Public Media’s Live from Here, The Today Show, WMNR Fine Arts Radio and Connecticut Public Radio, and The String Fingers Band’s debut bluegrass album Don’t Forget.

Chelsea completed her studies at The Juilliard School in 2016, receiving a Master of Music degree under the tutelage of David Chan and Laurie Smukler, and graduating with the Norman Benzaquen Career Advancement Grant for “talent, promise, creativity, and potential to make a significant impact in the performing arts.” She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Juilliard where she studied with Sally Thomas. A third-generation teacher, Chelsea is on faculty at Temple Emanu-El’s Nursery School, is a teaching artist with the New York Philharmonic’s “Philharmonic Schools” program, and has taught in the NYC Public Schools as a Morse Teaching Fellow. You can listen to Chelsea’s debut album, Les Deux, featuring original arrangements, and her newly released EP with Adam Rothenberg performing Corigliano Sonata, available on iTunes and Spotify.

Professional Experience

  • Broadway
  • Off Broadway
  • Concerts/Cabaret
  • Education
  • TV/Film

Regions

  • NYC/Tri-State Area

Interested in touring?

  • Yes

Hireable as

  • Incidental Music Composer/Arranger
  • Pit Musician (Other)
  • Actor-Musician

My Primary Instrument

  • Violin

My Instruments

  • Mandolin
  • Viola
  • Violin
  • Violin - fiddle

Software

  • Finale
  • Logic
  • Sibelius

Affiliations

  • THE AMERICAN FEDERATION OF MUSICIANS (AFM)

Pronouns

  • She/Her