Born in NanJing, China, cellist Yunwen Chen is an active solo and chamber performer. She holds a Master’s Degree and Graduate Diploma from the New England Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Paul Katz.
Yunwen is the first musician in her family. At age 16, her piano trio from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music embarked on an adventure to study together in the U.S. While attending Interlochen Arts Academy, Yunwen won the school concerto competition. Her trio was named a winner of the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition. Yunwen went on to receive her Bachelor’s Degree from the Eastman School of Music in 2017 under the guidance of Alan Harris. Over the years, she has attended music festivals such as Kneisel Hall and Yellow Barn where she has felt tremendously fulfilled collaborating with musicians from around the globe. She finds great meaning in playing works by living composers such as Brett Dean and James McMillan, and has enjoyed the opportunity of working closely with them. She is enthusiastic about playing new works composed by her friends and colleagues.
Taking music to community spaces such as nursing homes and schools is an important part of her life as an artist. During the first year of the pandemic, she volunteered to teach students from the Boston Arts Academy who could not afford extracurricular lessons, and spent a week leading a class of very young cello students enrolled in Cambridge Friends School’s string program. She is an artist in residence at Grace Note Farm in Rhode Island where she gives concerts frequently.
Yunwen currently resides in New York City. She is pursuing a Professional Performance Diploma at Manhattan School of Music as a student of Julia Lichten. She plays a 1771 instrument made by Carlo Ferdinando Landolfi.