Get to know violinist Tai Murray

Updated: Oct 15, 2019

Mississippi Symphony Orchestra presents String Sensation with Tai Murray

Acclaimed international violinist Tai Murray, guest artist for Mississippi Symphony Orchestra’s Bravo IV: String Sensation, will bring out the best in Brahms’ dreamy violin concerto.

The background on this rising young classical music star is just as stirring. She was born on Chicago’s South Side and is a graduate of Indiana University and the Juilliard School.

Her music study started at age 5, but her interest in the violin quickened even earlier than that.

“It was always just the violin. … It just felt right,” she said in a 2012 interview with Ebony magazine. The instrument’s history, deeply rooted in classical music, appealed to her. “It fits into the realm of classical music in such a beautiful way.”

She was only 9 when she made her concert debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. At 10, a pact she made with herself, to give 100 percent, put her on the path to become a professional classical violinist.

Reviews have applauded her “steely sweetness,” “enticing vibrato” and “rock-steady, concentrated intensity.”

Murray is a former BBC young generation artist, member of the Marlboro Festival and Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society. Her 2012 debut recording of the complete sonatas of Belgian composer Eugène Ysaÿe, generated “superlative” praise in Gramophone. Her recordings also include the 2013 “20th Century: the American Scene” on the Berlin-based label eaSonus and the 2014 “American Journey” with “Bernstein’s Serenade,” on the French label Mirare.

She’s performed on stages worldwide, including the Barbican, Queen Elisabeth & London Royal Albert Hall, Carnegie Hall, Berlin’s Konzerthaus, Copenhagen’s Tivoli Gardens, Shanghai’s Concert Hall and more.

The violin Murray plays has a story, too. “Like a lot of violinists who are really making national and international careers for themselves, she has, from a private collection, been loaned a really cool instrument,” says MSO’s Michael Beattie. Murray plays a violin by Tommaso Balestrieri made in Mantua circa 1765. The practice of loaning highly valuable instruments to top-notch players is both generous and practical.

“They’ll last longer if they’re used,” Beattie says, “and so this is perfect for the investor/owner who has them, to find someone he or she trusts,” and also for audiences, who hear great music on superb instruments that were meant to be played.

“So, we’ll be listening to a centuries-old violin play this magnificent music,” Beattie says — all in the hands of a 21st century musical star.

String Sensation Concert

2.16.19 / Thalia Mara Hall / 7:30 pm / Jackson, MS

Robert Schumann, Symphony No. 4, in D minor, Op. 120

Johannes Brahms, Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 77           Tai Murray, violin 

Tickets $26 & up: buy here >

Concert sponsored by:

Selby and Richard McRae Foundation

Baker Donelson

NewSouth NeuroSpine

Tai Murray's appearance made possible by:

Tom and Connie Kossen