Dawn Michelle Smith, viola
An honors graduate of New World School of the Arts High School in Miami, Florida, Dawn Smith has been a guest viola concerto soloist with national and international symphony orchestras including the Moscow State Symphony and the New World Symphony. She has collaborated with famed jazz musicians including Herbie Hancock, Wynton Marsalis, Regina Carter and Chuck Mangione. She has performed in the Turks and Caicos Islands, Moscow, Russia, St. Kitts and Nevis, Jamaica, Grand Cayman Island, Spoleto, Italy as well as various parts of the United States. Ms. Smith is currently a viola student at The Juilliard School in New York City where she studies with Samuel Rhodes. Her previous instructors have included Kim Kashkashian, Karen Tuttle, Carol Rodland, Victoria Chang, Judith Frishman, Charles Pikler, and Richard Fleischman. In 2003, Ms. Smith was the recipient of the Florida First Lady’s Scholarship Award and a featured soloist with the Santa Fe Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra. She has held the position of primary strings instructor in the Strings Program at the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center and she has performed gratis with the touring orchestra for “Missionaries for the Poor.” She is active in several civic and music organizations including the NAACP, The Juilliard School’s Multicultural Young Artist Network, the 92nd Street ‘Y’ and Jubilate community orchestras. In addition, Ms. Smith has served as principal violist of the Soulful Symphony Orchestra and The Juilliard School’s Symphony and Orchestra
Getting to know Dawn Michelle Smith
Hobbies: Water Skiing, Swimming, Playing Tennis and Basketball, Shopping, and going to the Movies with my Mom!
Favorite Food: *Blackened Catfish* at Red Lobster, Bread (All Kinds), My Mom's Curried Shrimp, My Sister's Buffalo Chicken Strips, *Ramen Noodles* (Chicken Flavor), My Dad's Conch Salad, and My Grandma's Fried Fish and Pigeon Peas and Rice!
Most Memorable/Scariest Musical Experience I Ever Had: In Russia, I drank a few glasses of champagne (without eating anything the entire day) immediately after I had finished performing. I started feeling really Woozy and was nearly about to vomit just as I was being called to rush back out on stage to take another bow. I was freaking out! I could barely even walk straight, let alone I had already changed into my flip-flops as soon as I entered my dressing room. So, I ran back out on stage (tipsy, and in my flip-flops) and took a final bow. Surprisingly, I don't even think the audience noticed. They applauded loudly and I responded to their cheers with smiles and outward signs of gratitude and acceptance. In the end, it all turned out to be a great event....and a learning experience. Keeping in mind that I was only 16 at the time, and that was my first glass of champagne!!!
What I Enjoy Most about Being a Young Artist: *Being able to share my gift and talent with the world*, Being A Role Model to People Just Like Me, Living Out My Aspirations, Having the Dual Role of Being a Mentor and a Mentee, Seeing My Family and My Community Proud of My Accomplishments, Being Happy!
Personal Quote/Motto: Anything That Is Not Growing, Is Dead! -Lauryn Hill