Issei Herr
I s s e i H e r r
Cellist Issei Herr is committed to a diverse array of music both old and new. A compelling soloist and a dedicated collaborator, Issei performs a scope of repertoire that ranges from the music of Bach, Babbitt, and Berio to Schubert, Schoenberg, and Stravinsky. Issei is a fierce advocate of the music of our time, working closely with living composers to develop emerging repertoire and presenting new works in the context of innovative concert programs. 

Highlights of the 2020 season included the premiere of a new solo cello work by Nico Muhly, the development of a collaborative project with composer and visual artist Julie Zhu, a solo performance tour in Oregon, and digital concerts with Unheard-of // Ensemble. Past highlights included a series of duo concerts with distinguished violinist Rolf Schulte in Mexico and New York, a collaborative performance art project with choreographer Mary Armentrout in San Francisco, performances in Guangzhou and Shanghai with PinkNoise, and a recording of the complete solo cello suites of Bach. 

Committed to musical collaboration and cross-disciplinary endeavors, Issei is an active member of PinkNoise, a chamber ensemble dedicated to the juxtaposition of works of the core repertoire with musical improvisation. Issei is also the newest member of Unheard-of // Ensemble, a contemporary quartet dedicated to the development and performance of new music by living composers. Issei has joined both ensembles in masterclasses and residencies at Cornell University, the Shanghai Conservatory, the Xinghai Conservatory in Guangzhou, Alia Musica Pittsburgh, and Stony Brook University, among others.

Issei has worked closely with some of the leading composers of our time, including Mario Davidovsky, Kaija Saariaho, Nico Muhly, and Augusta Read Thomas. He has performed as a member of The Philadelphia Orchestra’s SoundLab Ensemble, alongside the JACK Quartet in the American premiere of Zosha Di Castri’s String Octet, the East Coast Contemporary Ensemble, and as a member of the League of Composers Orchestra. In 2016, he appeared as a concerto soloist with the New Juilliard Ensemble in the New York premiere of Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky’s Hearing Solution.

In addition to his performing career, Issei is a committed musical educator and entrepreneur. He maintains a private teaching studio in New York City, with growing online satellites throughout the world. Issei is the co-founder of Circle Circle Arts, a worldwide music education company based in the United States.

Issei recently completed studies at The Juilliard School, where he was a student of distinguished cellist Fred Sherry.
photo by Michael Yu
photo by Michael Yu
photo by Julie Zhu
photo by Julie Zhu
Upcoming Performances
“Fire Ecologies” Premiere at the Gowanus Canal
Unheard-of Ensemble
September 18, 2021 at 6:30 PM
Gowanus Canal, Brooklyn
Unheard-of Ensemble Residency at Bowling Green State University
September 30-October 1, 2021
Bowling Green, Ohio
PinkNoise at Scholes Street Studio
October 24, 2021
Scholes Street Studio, Brooklyn
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