Grammy-nominated and Juilliard-trained violinist Jenny Oaks Baker will showcase a virtuoso talent that places her among America's most accomplished instrumental artists when she performs at the SCERA Center for the Arts March 9.
Tickets for a 7 p.m. performance are already sold out, but tickets remain for a 4 p.m. concert. Seats are reserved, and are $10 for adults and $8 for children (age 3-11), seniors (age 65+) and students (w/ID). Tickets are available in advance between 10am-6pm weekdays and Saturdays from 12Noon-6pm at SCERA, by calling (801) 225-ARTs or online atwww.scera.org.
Baker began her violin studies as a four-year-old in Provo when her father, Elder Dallin H. Oaks, was president of BYU. By eight she had made a solo debut and continued a musical path that includes a bachelor's degree in violin performance from the Curtis Institute of Music in New York City and a master's degree from Juilliard School in New York City.
Oak's artistic magic was recognized when her album "Wish Upon A Star: A Tribute to the Music of Walt Disney" was Grammy-nominated for Best Pop Instrumental Album. Her 2010 album "The Sings My Soul" hit #1 on the Billboard charts.
In addition, the mother of four manages to perform about 50 concerts a year in addition to recording songs and albums. Her debut as a featured soloist was at Carnegie Hall in 1999, and she will appear with the Pittsburgh Symphony this year at the invitation of the late Marvin Hamlisch, whom she soloed under many times. Other performing venues have included Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, Strathmore Hall, Coolidge Auditorium at the Library of Congress and the Kennedy Center.
For seven years she performed as first violinist in the National Symphony Orchestra until she resigned in 2007 to devote more time to her family. She has been a judge for the Stradivarius International Violin Competition and former Utah Gov. Jon M. Huntsman Jr. awarded her the Governor's Manson Artist Award for excellence in artistic expression.
Although she lives outside of Washington, D.C., her Utah roots are evident. Her tenth and newest album, "Noel: Carols of Christmas Past," was produced and arranged by Utah's Emmy Award-winning composer Kurt Bestor. And earlier collaboration with Bestor was "Silver Screen Serenade."
For Oaks, her music reflects her faith and she has said, "People are first spiritual beings, and it's important for people to have music in their lives. Music is the language of the Gods," adding, "You can become closer to your maker when you're creating things artistically.