Jo Nardolillo performs as a concerto soloist, recitalist, concertmaster, chamber musician and orchestra member throughout the United States and in Europe. As a champion of music by living American composers, she has commissioned, recorded, and given the world premieres of new works. She has been heard around the country on radio and television broadcasts, and performed with many of the world's leading musicians. Equally comfortable on the violin and viola, Dr. Nardolillo performs in a broad range of genres and styles. She is a member of the innovative new-music ensemble TangleTown Trio and the gypsy jazz band Touché.
Dr. Nardolillo is driven by the belief that music belongs to everyone, and she works to cultivate an artistic community that is equitable, inclusive, and values diversity. She the founding director of the Global Orchestra, an annual year-long project that uses virtual exchange to open a portal for students anywhere in the world to collaborate through accessible internet technology, unleashing the power of music to transcend all barriers. This annual year-long project infuses music curriculum with global citizenship and social justice, partnering youth ensembles around the world who play the instruments and musics traditional to the culture to create peer-to-peer connections, culminating in a virtual performance together.
Dr. Nardolillo has served as Concertmaster of Seattle's 5th Avenue Theater, the Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, and the Skagit Opera; Acting Principal Second Violin and Associate Concertmaster of the New Hampshire Music Festival Orchestra; Associate Concertmaster of the Maryland Symphony; Principal Second of the Boulder Philharmonic; visiting Concertmaster of the Bangor and Waterloo Symphonies; Assistant Principal Second of the Annapolis Symphony; and has been a member of the Alabama Symphony and Youngstown Symphony. Dr. Nardolillo has also performed with the New World Symphony and served as Principal Second at the National Orchestral Institute.
Dr. Nardolillo earned the Bachelor of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Master of Music degree from Rice University, and the Doctor of Musical Arts from the Eastman School of Music, where she was awarded the Certificate in Pedagogy from the Institute for Music Leadership and was Mikhail Kopelman’s teaching assistant.
Dr. Nardolillo has taught at the Eastman School of Music, where she received the prestigious TA Award for excellence in teaching, as well as Rice University, the Cleveland Institute of Music, the University of Rochester, Asbury University, the University of Puget Sound, the Hochstein School of Music, the Levine School of Music, and the Gadsden Center for the Arts. She served as Assistant Professor of Music at Mercer University, where she was named 2007-2008 Outstanding Faculty of the Year.
Dr. Nardolillo is currently Chair of the Performing Arts and Director of Orchestras at the Northwest School in Seattle. She is the director of the Global Orchestra and runs Orchestra4all.com, a resource helping teachers discover educational orchestra music from female and BIPOC composers.
Dr. Nardolillo has written four books:
"The Canon of Violin Literature" (2011, Scarecrow Press)
"All Things Strings: An Illustrated Dictionary" (2014, Rowman & Littlefield)
"Violin Secrets: 101 Strategies for the Advanced Violinist" (2015, Rowman & Littlefield)
"Cello Secrets: Over 100 Performance Strategies for the Advanced Cellist" with co-author Brian Hodges (2018, Rowman & Littlefield)
Dr. Nardolillo plays on a 1791 Johannes Cuypers violin, a 1991 John Newton viola, a 5-string Yamaha YEV, and a 2009 Brad Higgins fiddle.