Jessie Montgomery

Posted on: January 15th, 2019 by Tai Renfrow

Photo of Jessie Montgomery

Work Being Performed: Voodoo Dolls (2008)
Visit composer’s website

Jessie Montgomery is a violinist, composer and music educator from New York City. She performs and gives workshops in the US and abroad and her compositions are being performed by orchestras and chamber groups throughout the country.

Jessie was born and raised in Manhattan’s Lower East Side in the 1980s during a time when the neighborhood was at a major turning point in its history. Artists gravitated there and it was a hotbed of cultural activity and community development. Her parents (father a musician, her mother, an actress) were engaged in the activities of the neighborhood and regularly brought Jessie to rallies, performances and parties where neighbors, activists and artists gathered to celebrate and support the movements of the time. It is from this unique experience that Jessie has created a life in which performance, creativity, education and advocacy merge.

Jessie began her violin studies, at the Third Street Music School Settlement, one of the oldest community organizations in the country. Upon graduating with her Bachelor’s degree from the Juilliard School in Violin Performance in 2003, she joined forces with Community MusicWorks in Providence, Rhode Island, a nationally recognized leader in community development and music education. With this appointment came her first experience as a professional chamber musician as a member of the Providence String Quartet. She continued her chamber music endeavors as a founding member of PUBLIQuartet, a string quartet made up of composers and arrangers, featuring their own music as well as that of emerging and established contemporary composers. Since 2012 she has held post as a member of the highly acclaimed Catalyst Quartet, raved by the New York Times as “invariably energetic and finely burnished…performing with earthly vigor”, touring regularly in the United States and abroad. Most recently she has become a collaborator with Yo-Yo Ma’s Silkroad Ensemble and will tour with them in the upcoming 2018-19 season.