Artist in Residence Program
A flagship program of Strathmore’s Institute for Artistic and Professional Development, the Artist in Residence (AIR) program was created more than a decade ago to support artists as they transition to professional careers. Since its inception in 2005, the program has mentored 76 musicians ages 16-32. Every year a class of six is chosen after a competitive selection program. Strathmore Artists in Residence benefit from the support of mentor musicians, participate in professional development seminars, and are offered extensive performance opportunities throughout the 10-month program.
Auditions for our Artist in Residence program are held in January each year. Audition information will be posted each October and applications will be due in mid-December.
Artist in Residence Class of 2018
Sponsored by Effie & John Macklin
Gina Sobel is a devoted multi-instrumentalist—she’s just as comfortable on the flute or saxophone as she is singing or playing guitar. In addition to performing solo, she leads both a rock band and a jazz quartet. It’s this pluralistic spirit that brings so much of Sobel’s personal voice into all her compositions. Whether it’s a jazz-influenced jam or a sweet ballad with piercing lyrics and a soaring melody, Sobel uses her musical chops and songwriting prowess to create an energetic sound that exists outside of any single genre.
Since beginning his study of West African music at a very young age, Uasuf Gueye has devoted his life to being a cultural ambassador who brings African music and culture to people around the world and connects the African diaspora. His expansive repertoire encompasses West African traditional music and his own original compositions, many of which combine the rhythmic sounds of West African music with bluesy themes and jazzy riffs. A skilled drummer, balafon player, and instrument craftsman, Gueye’s extensive performance experience has established him as a true master of his craft.
Whether you find him at the piano in the Bohemian Caverns Jazz Orchestra, singing lead on one of his many original tracks, or writing a song for his upcoming solo debut album, Drew Kid has a unique way of including idioms from countless genres to create his own special blend of jazz, funk, soul, and hip-hop. The son of Filipino immigrants, Kid began studying piano at six years old. After discovering the music of Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder in middle school, he began to take piano more seriously. Kid’s jazz pedigree fused with his Filipino roots and knowledge of the DC hip-hop community creates a sound that lies beyond traditional genre boundaries.
A leading performer on the Chinese dulcimer, Chao Tian received her master’s degree in musical performance in 2010. Since then, she has toured throughout the world as leader of the Always Folk Ensemble, bringing her virtuosic talent on the dulcimer to people in more than 30 different countries. In addition to performing, Tian lectures at Beijing Language and Culture University and is a passionate advocate for the promotion and preservation of Chinese traditional music. Through her work, she strives to create dialogues between Chinese traditional music and music from the rest of the world.
In the words of legendary singer Patti Austin, “[Cecily is] a brilliant, beautiful, and talented young lady—look out!” After studying voice for more than 10 years and graduating from Swarthmore College in 2012, Cecily decided to follow her passion and begin her career as a performing artist. A powerhouse vocalist and sensitive songwriter with a passion for soul, jazz, and ’90s R&B, Cecily has entertained audiences up and down the East Coast with her impassioned live performances and a voice that has been compared to vocalists from Brandy to Corinne Bailey Rae.
After beginning her musical education at age 8, Josanne Francis found her voice in the steelpan. Francis was a natural pannist (steelpan musician), and her hard work and musical ability landed her a scholarship to the University of Southern Mississippi where she studied percussion and music education. Francis then moved on to Northern Illinois University (NIU) to study steelpan at the graduate level, honing her skills even further. Francis is a highly sought-after pannist, having acted as a guest artist at schools and steelpan festivals around the country. Francis currently serves as the artistic director of the Cultural Academy for Excellence, where she uses the steelpan to bring music education to after-school and weekend programs.
We rely on charitable gifts from individuals to sustain and expand our visual and performing arts experiences and arts education programs. Your gift will foster incredible social impact by allowing Strathmore to remain a strong and vibrant resource in your community.