Scott Slapin's viola playing has received critical acclaim in Fanfare, Strad, the American Record Guide, Mundo Clásico, and Musical Opinion, and his popular recital compositions have been performed by hundreds of viola players throughout the world. Scott and his wife, violist Tanya Solomon, have been performing together as the award-winning Slapin-Solomon Viola Duo for more than twenty years. Many of Scott's compositions can be heard on more than ten albums by the Slapin-Solomon Viola Duo, the Wistaria String Quartet, the Penn State Viola Ensemble, Viola Around the World, and the American Viola Quartet. Scott was the first person to record the complete set of J.S. Bach's Sonatas and Partitas on viola; in addition to a rare viola recording of Paganini's 24 Caprices, he can be heard playing Bach, Paganini, and some of his own compositions on various soundtracks for film and TV. At eighteen Scott was one of the youngest graduates of the Manhattan School of Music in New York City. He teaches viola, violin, and composition privately online and has reached students on five continents via Skype.
Scott has been commissioned by the Primrose International Viola Competition and the American Viola Society, where he was a 2020 artist in residence, and he has premiered solo viola works in such venues as Carnegie's Weill Hall and at international viola congresses. He was a fellow at the Montalvo Arts Center in California and served as a committee member, judge, and performer for the inaugural Maurice Gardner Composition Competition. Scott was born into a family of string players in 1974 and studied composition with Richard Lane and violin/viola with Barbara Barstow and Emanuel Vardi. He performed daily as the on-stage solo violist for the 1992-1993 New York City production of Orpheus In Love, a chamber opera about a viola-playing Orpheus, and gained orchestral experience playing in the Cincinnati and São Paulo Symphonies, among others. Scott and Tanya met touring as the viola section of the Philadelphia Virtuosi and have taught at various colleges and academies in western Massachusetts. For more than one-hundred viola videos, visit Scott and Tanya's YouTube channel.
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"Slapin is a real viola virtuoso..." (American Record Guide)
“…great talent not only as a violist but as a composer” -Journal of the American Viola Society
“Slapin’s magnificient playing says ‘Bring it on!’” -Fanfare
“Scott Slapin is great!” -Ruggiero Ricci
“well-designed music…emotionally expressive and varied” -New Jersey Star Ledger
“The virtuosity and musicality of Scott Slapin’s performances…surely cannot be improved upon.” -Musical Opinion
“first rate viola virtuoso…” -Journal of the Canadian Viola Society
“instrumentista exceptional” -Mundo Clasico
“wonderful playing… sonorous and rich” -The New York Violist
“tonal and rhythmic command” -Strad Magazine
"If any contemporary violist continues to carry the torch of the composer-performer, it is Scott Slapin." (Journal of the American Viola Society)
Scott demonstrating a Paganini Caprice on
the viola during a masterclass at the
Hartt School of Music.
Scott and Tanya giving a class on the
Bach Chaconne at the Lyra Festival and
Workshop at Smith College.
The Slapin-Solomon Duo premiering Scott’s
Four Seasons of New England at the
Gaylord Library in South Hadley, MA.
Scott performing his own piece, Capricious, with Tanya Solomon and Ila Rondeau at the 2012 Viola Congress in Rochester, NY. (photo by Dwight Pounds)
Composers Forum at the 2008 Viola Congress in Tempe, AZ. From left to right: Moderator James DeMars and composers Scott Slapin, Bruce E. Miller, and Kenji Bunch.
Scott premiering Rachel Matthews’ Dreams at the 2010 Viola Congress in Cincinnati, OH (with composer).
(photo by Dwight Pounds)
The Wistaria String Quartet recording an album of
Scott at Penn State coaching the viola ensemble, giving a masterclass, and playing a recital.
A recital at the Williston Northampton
School where Scott taught violin and viola and
coached the ensemble.
Slapin on the campus of Mt. Holyoke College where he taught viola and coached chamber music.
Scott presenting his educational series 'Greatest Hits from the Twenties' for Ron Houston's teaching studio in Texas.
Performing Elliot Corner’s Energico for solo viola
in Amherst, MA.