Instrument Composer Editor Instrumentation Resources

Cynthia Phelps

"Not only does Cynthia Phelps produce one of the richest, deepest viola timbres in the world, she is a superb musician" (Seattle Post-Intelligencer). Principal Violist of the New York Philharmonic, Ms. Phelps has distinguished herself both here and abroad as one of the leading instrumentalists of our time. The recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the 1988 Pro Musicis International Award and first prize at both the Lionel Tertis International Viola Competition and the Washington International String Competition, she has captivated audiences with her compelling solo and chamber music performances. She is "a performer of top rank...the sounds she drew were not only completely unproblematical --technically faultless, generously nuanced-- but sensuously breathtaking" (The Boston Globe).

Ms. Phelps performs throughout the world as soloist with orchestras, including the Minnesota Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, San Diego and Vermont Symphonies, Orquesta Sinfonica de Bilbao, and Hong Kong Philharmonic among others. She has appeared in recital in Paris, Rome, Los Angeles, Boston and Washington, and at New York's Alice Tully Hall, London's Wigmore Hall, and St. David's Hall in Cardiff, Wales. She has also been heard on National Public Radio's St. Paul Sunday Morning, Radio France, and RAI in Italy, and has been featured on The MacNeil/Lehrer News Hour, and CBS Sunday Morning.

Ms. Phelps has performed internationally as a collaborator with such artists as Isaac Stern, Itzak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman, Yo-Yo Ma, Lynn Harrell, and Yefim Bronfman, among many others. A much sought-after chamber musician, she performs regularly with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Boston Chamber Music Society, and at the 92nd Street Y, as well as with the American, Brentano, St. Lawrence and Prague String Quartets, as well as the Kalichstein-Robinson-Laredo Trio. She has appeared at the Mostly Mozart, Marlboro, Bridgehampton, La Jolla, Steamboat Springs, Vail, Music at Menlo, Santa Fe, Seattle, as well as in Europe at the Naples, Cremona, and Schleswig-Holstein Festivals. She is a founding member of the chamber group Les Amies, a flute-harp-viola ensemble formed with harpist Nancy Allen and flutist Carol Wincenc.

Ms. Phelps regularly receives enthusiastic reviews for her performances as soloist with the New York Philharmonic; works she has performed include Berlioz's Harold in Italy, the Bartok Viola Concerto and Strauss's Don Quixote, the Benjamin Lees Concerto for String Quartet, and the premiere of a concerto written for her by Sofia Gubaidulina. Other recent performances have included a New York Philharmonic International tour featuring the Gubaidulina, a work written for her by composer Steven Paulus (commissioned by the Tucson Winter Chamber Music Festival), and return solo engagements with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, the San Diego Symphony and numerous other orchestras.

Her most recent album, for flute, viola, and harp, on Telarc, was nominated for a Grammy Award. Her solo debut recording is on Cala Records, and she can also be heard on the Marlboro Recording Society, Polyvideo, Nuova Era, Virgin Classics, and Covenant labels. Ms. Phelps and her husband, cellist Ronald Thomas, reside in New Jersey and have three children, Lili, Christinia, and Caitlin.

Read an interview with Cynthia Phelps conducted by the New York Philharmonic.

Below you will find the complete list of scores edited by Cynthia Phelps.


Composer Title Instrument Editor Instrumentation Price
Strauss, Richard Don Quixote Viola Phelps, Cynthia Orchestral $ 7.99