Jessica Zhou

Lecturer, Harp | jessz68@hotmail.com

JessicaZhouBorn in Beijing, China.  Ms. Jessica Zhou became Harpist of the Boston Symphony Orchestra in the beginning of 2009-2010 season.  Prior to joining the BSO,  Ms. Zhou has been the Principal Harpist of the New York City Opera from 2004-2009.  Other orchestral appearances include the Swiss Romande Symphony Orchestra, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Hong Kong Philharmonic, the Moscow Chamber Orchestra,  and has toured Japan with the London Symphony Orchestra.  Ms. Zhou also made frequent appearances with the New York Philharmonic.

As Winner of the 2001 Pro Musicis International Award, Ms. Zhou was praised for her New York debut in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall as “…a world class artist”.  Most recently, the New York Times praised her performance of Debussy’s Danse Sacre and Profane for Harp and Orchestra as: “impressive” and “deftly played”.

In 2001, Ms. Zhou became the first and only Chinese harpist ever to win top prizes in three of the most prestigious harp competitions in the world, including the “Prix du Jury” at the 3rd Concours International de Harpe Lily Laskine in Deauville, France, Fourth Prize in the USA International Harp Competition, and Second Prize at the 14th International Harp Contest in Israel where she was also awarded the A.Z.Propes Prize of the best performance of the required Israeli Composition. She is a two-time winner of the Anne Adams Award National Harp Competition sponsored by the American Harp Society, which presented her in recitals in Boston, Hartford, New York City, San Diego, Mexico and Taipei, Taiwan, where she also served as Chairman of Jury in the First Taiwan National Harp Competition.

As soloist with orchestra, Ms. Zhou has performed with the Israel Philharmonic, the Mainly Mozart Festival Orchestra in San Diego, the New York City Opera Orchestra, the Geneva Chamber Orchestra, where she gave the world premiere of Haim Permont’s Double Harp Concerto during the 2002 World Harp Congress.

As a chamber musician, Ms. Zhou has performed with the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, Boston Chamber Music Society, Caramoor Music Festival, Mainly Mozart Festival.

Ms. Zhou started playing the harp at nine years old studying with Yin Zuo at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing.  She is an graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy where she studied with Joan Holland.  She holds the Bachelor and Master Degree of Music from the Juilliard School where she studied with Nancy Allen.