About

Nico Olarte-Hayes, cellist and conductor
Nico Olarte-Hayes is academically accomplished, multi-talented, and service-driven.  He graduated in 2012 with honors from the Harvard/New England Conservatory Joint Program, simultaneously earning an A.B. in Physics from Harvard College and his Master in Music from NEC.  He also completed pre-college studies with distinction at The Juilliard School and studied for eight years at the Perlman Music Program.  As a cellist, he has given solo recitals at Lincoln Center, in Memphis’ Artists Ascending Series, and New York’s Young Musician’s Forum, and throughout the Netherlands and Japan.  Nico played on Live from Lincoln Center (PBS) and the Kennedy Center Honors (CBS) in tribute to violinist Itzhak Perlman, his long-time mentor.  He is also a conductor, winner of the 2015 Vincent C. LaGuardia Conducting Competition, participant in the Tanglewood Festival Conducting Seminar, and music director of New York’s IconoClassic Opera.  As an educator, he served as music director of New York’s East End Youth Orchestra, an intensive workshop in ensemble playing for talented public school students.  For many years, he toured as an ambassador for New York’s Midori and Friends, giving performances for under-served children at inner-city schools. The Leonore Annenberg Fellowship provided Nico with the time to focus on his preparation for recitals, promotional recordings and competitions.  He was able to purchase artistic equipment and conduct workshops with the New World Symphony.  Nico’s talents were recognized when he was one of three conductors selected to participate in a conducting workshop with renowned conductor Michael Tilson Thomas.

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