Aaron Minsky Bio

American cellist, Aaron Minsky, is among the most influential string musicians of his generation. His “celtar” style (combining cello and guitar technique) has entered the popular and classical worlds. His over a dozen music books, published by Oxford University Press, have become standard repertoire, his music appearing in the curriculums of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, U.K., the American String Teachers’ Association, the Australian Music Examinations Board, and many others around the world. He composed the first classical arrangement ever approved by Ice Nine (the Grateful Dead’s publisher): “Dead Cello” (Latham Music). Aaron has given masterclasses, workshops and performances in the United States, England, Ireland, and Australia and has taught on the primary and college levels. He conducted the world premiere of his “Legends of Cellandia” for cello orchestra (commissioned by the London Cello Society) at the Royal Academy of Music, London. Minsky debuted his cello concerto, “The Conqueror”, with the Staten Island Philharmonic.

Aaron Minsky is a Yamaha Artist and a D’Addario Artist. He has performed with top orchestras on two continents. His rock band “Von Cello” toured the United States and released several CDs. Also known as Von Cello, Aaron has given interviews and performances on radio and television (including Good Day New York, FOX and Friends, and WOR). His articles and interviews have been published in Relix (leading jam band magazine), Oxford University Press' blog, AUSTA magainze (Australian String Teachers Association), JESTA magazine (Junior European String Teachers Association), Allegro magazine (Associated Federation of Musicians), Violoncello Society of New York newsletter, and many others. He is in Who’s Who in America and the International Who’s Who, and has performed with a wide range of artists from David Bowie to Rostropovitch.

Already an accomplished rock guitarist in his teens, it was Aaron’s search for a new guitar sound that led him to the cello. Wanting as broad a view as possible, he studied with many teachers - including Harvey Shapiro and Channing Robbins of Juilliard, Jonathan Miller of the Boston Symphony, George Saslow and Einar Holm, and David Wells of the Manhattan School of Music where he obtained a Master of Music degree. For more information go to his extensive website: http://www.voncello.com

Von Cello Bio

"Shooting stars" would describe most rock stars: they flash across the musical landscape, then quickly burn out. The revolutionary, the one who changes the course of music, is the one who remains like a fixed luminary in the heavens. Jimi Hendrix revolutionized the guitar, Ian Anderson revolutionized the flute, and Von Cello revolutionized the cello.

In his early teens Aaron Minsky was already a famous rock guitarist and singer/songwriter in the populated New York City neighborhood of his youth. Suddenly at the age of 15 he stunned his friends and fans: he quit his band, cut his hair, and started practicing the cello day and night. Few could understand his disappearance from the popular music scene, but Aaron had a vision: he would bring the dignified yet overlooked cello into center stage. He would teach the cello to rock! Thus he became known as Von Cello.

A student of music history, Von Cello realized that a true revolutionary must first master the tradition he hopes to revolutionize, so he began studying with the finest cello teachers from Juilliard and elsewhere, obtaining a Master of Music degree from Manhattan School of Music. Then came the years of establishing himself as a respected classical musician: premiering his original music at the First World Cello Congress and the New Directions Cello Festival, performing in top orchestras on two continents, concertizing in Carnegie Hall, on radio and television, giving interviews on major news networks including Reuters, Associated Press, and FOX, performing for presidents, senators, and other VIP's.

Expanding on his award winning song writing ability, he composed over a dozen music books published by Oxford University Press. With thousands of copies sold, excellent reviews, and the praise of many famous musicians, these books have started a revolution in string playing. They are now considered standard repertoire, even appearing in the curriculums of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, U.K., and the American String Teacher's Association. The international performances of Aaron's music are tracked by ASCAP, of which he is an award winning member.

Finally in the position to live his dream, Aaron founded the Von Cello Band, the first cello fronted rock-power-trio in history! The band has made several CDs and has delighted audiences around the country with their blend of hard, alternative, and jam rock. Internationally known, they have received radio play as far away as Siberia. Aaron has also performed with notable rock artists including David Bowie, and the Plasmatics.

Von Cello has made music history by being the first person to bring the music of the Grateful Dead into the classical arena. Dead Cello, his solo cello suite based on the music of the Grateful Dead published by Latham Music, has received performances around the world.

Recognizing his rising fame, Yamaha Corporation invited Von Cello to become a Yamaha Artist. D'Addario Strings quickly followed suit. All of this acclaim has led to Aaron's inclusion in Who's Who in America and the International Who's Who!

There are famous classical musicians who occasionally "cross over" to pop, and there are rock stars who occaisionally "cross over" to classical, but there has never been a rock artist who crossed over to classical, became accepted as a classical artist, and then came back!

That is until - Von Cello!

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