Violist Sheila Browne is from Philadelphia and also holds Irish citizenship. Known as a versatile and dynamic performer with a unique viola voice, she enjoys an international career of solo, chamber collaborations and concerto appearances. She has performed in major venues on six continents, including Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Concertgebouw, Royal Festival Hall, Teatro Colon, and the National Center for Performing Arts in Beijing. She has recorded for the Sony, Nonesuch, Bridge, Albany and MSR labels, premiered several concerti written for her and has worked closely with many living composers on their music.
Browne was violist of the internationally prize-winning Arianna String Quartet, as well as the Pelligrini and Gotham quartets. Additionally, she is a founding member of the Fire Pink Trio. Browne has collaborated / recorded with Audra MacDonald, Gilbert Kalish, David Krakauer, Paul Katz, Anton Kuerti, Ruth Laredo, Shenyang, Richard Stolzman, Carol Wincenc, the Diaz Trio, and members of the American, Amernet, Attacca, Audubon, Borromeo, Brentano, Calidore, Guarneri, Juilliard, Shanghai, Stamitz and Vermeer quartets. As principal violist of the New World Symphony, she was selected by Artistic Director Michael Tilson-Thomas to be featured in the PBS documentary “Beethoven Alive!”. For two years she was co-principal of New York String Seminar, was awarded a Solo Residency at the Banff Center, and has participated in Evian, Jeunesses Musicales, Music Academy of the West, BUTI- Tanglewood and Donaueschingen music festivals, among others.
Ms. Browne is also a dedicated teacher who believes in a holistic approach and has given viola and chamber music masterclasses at most major music schools in the U.S. (Juilliard, Eastman, Cleveland Institute, New England Conservatory, U.of Michigan, Manhattan School, Rice University) and many in Europe and Asia. She was the Teaching Assistant of famed pedagogue Karen Tuttle at Juilliard while receiving her bachelor’s degree and continued her Aufbau studies with Kim Kashkashian in Germany after being awarded a German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) scholarship. She also received a Master of Music at Rice University with Karen Ritscher and Paul Katz in his Quartet Program. Browne’s students have gone on to almost every major viola program in the U.S. as well as in Europe and Asia, and they can be found to be musically employed all over the world.
Browne was honored to be chosen as the inaugural viola faculty of the Tianjin Juilliard School (graduate and pre-college programs) and Tianjin Juilliard Ensemble—performing and giving masterclasses in 16 countries on four continents. She also served as Associate Professor of Viola at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts where she taught for a decade, University of Delaware, University of Tennessee as well as part- time at Duke University and New York University. Currently she is Associate Professor of Viola at Lynn Conservatory.
Chosen as faculty for the founding year of National Youth Orchestra of Iraq, she was the first viola professor ever to give a masterclass in Iraqi Kurdistan. She is currently Director of the popular international January Karen Tuttle Viola Workshop and is the Interim Artistic Director of Techne Music, also teaching at Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival. She has served on the Executive Board of the American Viola Society and has participated in many viola congresses (Eastman, Oberlin, Colburn, South Africa, Australia). She was honored to be named the William Primrose Recitalist of 2016.
Browne is a huge art, nature and animal lover, and believes in the power of music to bring people of all cultures together in peace around the world.