New York City based violinist Evelyn Petcher Brandes brings a passion for innovation and community to every performance. Equally at home in concert halls and community venues, she has performed and led workshops all over the US and abroad. Recent engagements range from performing J.S. Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 4 solo at the Youth Music Culture Guangdong Festival in China, to performing the music of contemporary composer Colin Jacobsen in Crescendo North America’s Chamber Music Project at Lincoln Center, to improvising in a Bronx Arts Ensemble cross-disciplinary performance that mixed Balkan music with Puerto Rican Bomba drumming and dance.
Evelyn’s performances often have an unusual twist, such as asking audience members to choose notes for an improvisation, or pairing Bach sonatas with beat-boxing. She has performed alongside renowned cellist Yo Yo Ma, and collaborated with internationally acclaimed non-classical artists, including the Alash throat-singing ensemble from Tuva, and beat-boxer Shodeke Talifero. Her collaboration with Talifero and Classical Revolution Baltimore musicians was described by the Baltimore Sun as making "interesting sparks fly."
A seasoned orchestral musician, Evelyn has had the pleasure of serving as concertmaster and principal second violin ensembles such as the Youth Music Culture Guangdong Symphony Orchestra, the Chelsea Music Festival, and the Peabody Symphony. She has played with orchestras all over the East Coast including Symphony in C, the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, the Annapolis Symphony, the Chattanooga Symphony, and the New World Symphony in Miami, FL. She recently made her Carnegie Hall debut with the Chamber Orchestra of New York.
Evelyn is a violinist and teaching artist with the Bronx Arts Ensemble, and a founding member of two community-focused chamber ensembles. Her chamber collective Leadlights presents interactive concerts featuring both contemporary and classical music at venues like hospitals, schools, and churches across NYC. Her violin-piano duo Colibri has played everywhere from Battery Park in NYC to Andie Musik Live! in Baltimore, MD, and holds educational workshops alongside every performance.
Evelyn’s love of the stage began with childhood solo performances with the Chattanooga Symphony and youth orchestras. In 2010, she earned her undergraduate degree at Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, Georgia, studying violin with Jay Christy and music composition with Brandon Kreuze. Evelyn received her master’s degree in violin performance in 2012, studying with renowned violinist Pamela Frank at the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University.