Promote Cross-cultural Collaboration of Music Internationally

Artistic Director

Trey Lee 


Hailed a “Miracle” by Gramophone, Trey Lee enthralls audiences with a virtuosity that combines intellectual sophistication and a profound depth of emotions. His concerto debut at Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage won him a standing ovation, with The New York Times critic Anthony Tommasini declaring him “the excellent cellist…with enveloping richness and lyrical sensitivity.” The late Lorin Maazel praised him as “a marvelous protagonist…a superb cellist” after conducting Trey in Haydn’s C Major Concerto with the Philharmonia Orchestra. In his performance with the Netherlands Philharmonic at the Royal Concertgebouw Hall, Trey was acclaimed by the critics as a “Star Musician.”

The past few seasons has seen Trey collaborate with Mikko Franck and the Philharmonic Orchestra Radio France, Vladimir Ashkenasy and the Mantova Chamber Orchestra, Umberto Benedetti Michelangeli at the Teatro del Verme in Milan, and record a concert on Deutsche Welle. In addition, seeking to increase the expressive possibilities of the cello while also attracting new audiences, Trey has re-arranged works which have been eagerly received by audiences around the world. He debuted his arrangement of Piazzolla's Four Seasons of Buenos Aires with the Trondheim Soloists followed by a tour of Norway. The Dream of the Red Chamber Capriccio, co-rearranged by Trey, was premiered with Leonard Slatkin and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra on their inaugural tour of China. Among the notable musicians with whom Trey works include: conductors Vassily Sinaisky, Juanjo Mena, Yuri Bashmet, Hannu Lintu, Santtu-Matias Rouvali, and Dima Slobodeniouk; and orchestras BBC Philharmonic, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Beethoven Orchestra Bonn, the Moscow Soloists; and chamber orchestras of London, Stuttgart, Munich and Romanian Radio.

Trey is a guest at festivals around the world, including Kuhmo, Banff, Seoul Spring, and the Australian Festival of Chamber Music. He has partnered with artists such as Julia Fischer, Vilde Frang, Pekka Kuusisto, Alexander Sitkovetsky and the Borodin Quartet. Most recently, he became a member of Canada’s award-winning piano quartet, Ensemble Made in Canada. Trey has also given the world premiere of Bright Sheng’s latest cello concerto dedicated to him, The Blazing Mirage, inspired by the UNESCO World Heritage site of Dunhuang.

A laureate of major international competitions, including First Prize at the International Antonio Janigro Cello Competition, and major prizes at New York’s Naumburg and Helsinki’s Paulo International Competitions, Trey has released several albums under EMI which topped the classical charts. In addition, he can be heard as the featured soloist on the original EMI-released soundtrack recording for the Sundance Festival featured film “The Drummer.” His other albums include Bright Sheng’s The Blazing Mirage under Naxos and The Dream of Red Chamber Capriccio under the direction of composer Wang Liping. Trey has been featured by the Financial Times, CNN, China’s CCTV, and Radio Television Hong Kong’s award-winning documentary series “Outstanding Young Chinese Musicians”. Italy’s Il Corriere Della Sera heralded Lee as one of China’s classical music “Golden Boys & Girls” alongside pianists Lang Lang and Yuja Wang.

Trey is often invited as a featured artist at major events around the world, such as the launch of The IMAGINE Project with Yoko Ono, Hugh Jackman and ABBA’s Bjorn Ulvaeus to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child at the UN General Assembly Hall. Other inspiring projects Trey has undertaken include performances at the indigenous First Nation communities of northern Canada, and a fundraising concert for anti-apartheid hero Denis Goldberg and his House of Hope Foundation in South Africa. He is the founding artistic director of Musicus Society with the aim to promote cross-cultural collaboration of music internationally through performances and nurturing next generation artists from his birthplace Hong Kong. He has spearheaded several music festivals, including the Musicus Fest and the Hong Kong International Chamber Music Festival.

Trey attended Juilliard’s Pre-College Division, Harvard University (where he received his Bachelors in Economics), the New England Conservatory, Madrid’s Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofia, the Cologne Musikhochschule, and studied with Frans Helmerson, Laurence Lesser, Bernard Greenhouse, and Ardyth Alton. Since 2012, Trey has been an ambassador of UNICEF Hong Kong.

Trey plays on the 1703 "Comte de Gabriac" cello by Venetian master maker Matteo Goffriller.