Jesse Mills


Grammy-nominated violinist Jesse Mills enjoys performing music of many genres, from classical to contemporary, as well as composed and improvised music of his own invention.  In 2004, Mills made his professional concerto debut with the Ravinia Festival Orchestra conducted by Nicholas McGegan in a unique partnership with Salsa trombonist, Jimmy Bosch. 

This project combined a classical performance of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, with Mills as violin soloist, and a Salsa band arrangement of the same piece, fronted by Bosch and Mills as improvising soloists.

A successful performance at Ravinia led to bookings with the Phoenix, Colorado and Green Bay Symphonies for the 2005-2006 season.  In past years Mills has performed as soloist with the Juilliard Pre-College Chamber Orchestra, the Teatro Argentino Orchestra in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the New Jersey Symphony, the Sarah Lawrence College Symphony, the Plainfield Symphony, the Hudson Valley Philharmonic, the Aspen Music Festival’s Sinfonia Orchestra as winner of the Festival’s E. Nakamichi Violin Concerto Competition.

As a chamber musician Jesse Mills has performed at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, New York City’s Merkin Concert Hall and Bargemusic, Carnegie’s Weill Hall, Columbia University’s Miller Theater, Boston’s Gardener Museum, the Cooper Arts Series at Cooper Union, the Rising Stars series at Caramoor, the Ravinia Festival’s Bennett-Gordon Hall, and at the Marlboro Music Festival.  He performed on the opening night of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s “A Great Day in New York” series with pianist/composer Peter Schickele, and this concert was broadcast live on WNYC 93.9 FM in New York. 

Mr. Mills is an avid performer of contemporary works.  As a member of the FLUX Quartet from 2001-2003, he played in many concert halls around the world, performing music composed during the last 50 years.  Among these concerts were 3 performances of Morton Feldman's String Quartet No. 3, a six-hour-long work of immense beauty.  Mills has played extensively with renowned cellist, Fred Sherry, in works by Reich, Wuorinen, Schoenberg, and avant-garde composer and saxophonist, John Zorn. In 2004-2005, they recorded Schoenberg’s String Quartet Concerto and various chamber works of Anton Webern for NAXOS, as well as Zorn’s String Quartet, Necronomicon, on Tzadik. 

Mills is co-founder of Duo Prism, a violin-piano duo with Rieko Aizawa.  He is also a member of Nurse Kaya, an ensemble comprised of string quartet plus bass and drums which exclusively plays compositions written by its members; much of this music involves improvisation. The group plays in traditional venues such as concert halls and clubs, as well as in schools, hospitals, and jails.  In 2005, Nurse Kaya was awarded a Residency Partnership Grant from Chamber Music America, which resulted in a successful week-long residency in the public schools as well as at the Rialto Theater of Loveland, Colorado.  Mills was an integral part of New Spirit – a new recording on the Verve label by jazz pianist, Makoto Ozone.  Several performances of this project will be presented next year.

Jesse Mills began violin studies at the age of four. He graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree from The Juilliard School as a student of Robert Mann in 2001.  He has previously studied with Christiane Pors, Naoko Tanaka and Itzhak Perlman.


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