Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu

Adjunct Instructor

  • Program:
  • Division:
    Classical Performance and Composition
  • Instrument:


Violinist Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu enjoys a versatile international career as an orchestral soloist, a recitalist and a chamber musician. She has been featured with the National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan and the Taipei Symphony Orchestra in her native country, as well as with such European orchestras as the Odessa Philharmonic Orchestra and the Russian State Symphony Orchestra.

As solo recitalist and chamber musician, Wu performs regularly in Asia, Europe and North America, at such prominent venues as Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center and Library of Congress, among many others. Artists with whom she has collaborated include Gary Graffman, Kim Kashkashian, Ani Kavafian, Ida Kavafian, Midori, Ralph Kirshbaum, Anton Nel, Cynthia Phelps, William Preucil, Fred Sherry, and members of the Alban Berg, Brentano, Guarneri, Miró, Tokyo, and Ying quartets. Wu appeared as guest violist—her second instrument—with the Orion String Quartet during their 2009 tour of Asia.

Wu’s festival collaborations include the Marlboro Music Festival, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, Mainly Mozart, La Jolla Music Society SummerFest, Music@Menlo, Verbier Festival and Academy, and she has served as a chamber music coach at the ENCORE School for Strings, and the Hotchkiss Summer Portals.

Wu’s media appearances feature performances on NPR’s “From the Top,” on WHYY TV and Radio in Philadelphia, as well as numerous on-air interviews with Philharmonic Radio Taipei and IC Broadcasting of Taiwan. She has been spotlighted on Taiwan’s TVBS Television and in the September 2004 issue of Marie Claire Taiwan.

Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu received her bachelor’s degree from the Curtis Institute of Music in 2008, which awarded her the Milka Violin Artist Fellowship. In 2010 she graduated from the USC Thornton School of Music, with awards for excellence in both solo string instrument performance and chamber music. Wu’s teachers include Dorothy DeLay, Hyo Kang, Ida Kavafian, Victor Danchenko, Steven Tenenbom, and Midori Goto. She joined the Thornton School faculty in 2011 as an Adjunct Instructor of Violin and Chamber Music.

Among Wu’s many honors and awards are the Gold Medal in the 2003 Stulberg International String Competition and third prize in the Odessa International David Oistrakh Violin Competition. She has been praised by Taiwan’s Liberty Times for “capturing the spirit of the music astonishingly.”

Wu performs on a 1734 Domenico Montagnana violin.

Teaching Philosophy

“Most times, musicians are remembered by their colleagues not only for how they played, but for what it was like working with them. I believe it is crucial that all the wonderful young musicians at the Thornton School of Music learn to become respectful colleagues as they transition into the professional world. Not only do I want to help them explore the magnificent chamber music repertoire and expand their ability to navigate ensemble sound and playing, but I also want to help them to work with people more successfully. They will learn to communicate professionally and efficiently, to deliver and exchange their ideas both through playing and discussion, and to work through their differences, resolving issues in a healthy manner – all while having a GREAT time playing chamber music, of course!” – Cindy Wu