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Emily Tsai, Violin & Oboe

Emily Tsai began her musical studies at the age of four on the violin and started the oboe when she was ten. She won 2nd place in the Eastman Oboe and University of Maryland Concerto Competitions where she performed with the University of Maryland Symphony Orchestra with added dance choreography.  She has also appeared as a soloist with the Washington Asian Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Amadeus Orchestra.  She is currently the oboist and touring director of the internationally touring wind quintet, WindSync.  


Based in the Washington, DC area, she is an active freelancer performing with such orchestras as the National Philharmonic, Amadeus Orchestra, Maryland Lyric Opera, Allentown Symphony Orchestra, Alexandria Symphony, and she is the principal oboist in the Garden State Philharmonic.  She is the oboist in DC-based groups, the Patagonia Winds, and the D’amore Duo.  She is also the adjunct oboe professor at St. Mary's College, MD and has a robust private studio of both oboe and violin students.  DMV Classical praises her for “a consistently lovely tone and [taking] her melodic twists and turns with stylish assurance.”

In past summers, Emily has attended the AIMs Festival in Austria, Mortizburg Music Festival in Germany, Alba Music Festival in Italy, Sarasota Music Festival, and many others, where she studied under such prominent oboists as Neil Black, Allan Vogel, Nancy King, Richard Killmer, Werner Herbers, Randall Ellis, John Ferillo, and Robert Sheena. Her main teachers include Mark Hill, Richard Killmer, and Malcolm Smith. She received her Bachelor of Music degree in Oboe Performance from the Eastman School of Music with a Performer’s Certificate and the Chamber Music Award, and her Bachelor of Science degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Rochester graduating Magna Cum Laude.  She received her Master of Music from the University of Maryland where she was part of the Graduate Fellowship Quintet, SIREN. 


In her down time, Emily can be found training for half marathons and biking with her husband, Karl, playing video games, and spoiling her two adorable cats, Xenia and Perch.

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