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Life and career
Weilerstein was born in Rochester, New York. She started playing the cello at age four. She made her debut at age 13 with the Cleveland Orchestra playing Tchaikovsky's Variations on a Rococo Theme. As a soloist she has performed with a number of other major orchestras on four continents. She also is active in chamber music and performs with her parents, violinist Donald Weilerstein, (the founding first violinist of the Cleveland Quartet) and pianist Vivian Hornik Weilerstein, as the Weilerstein Trio. The trio currently resides at the New England Conservatory in Boston. Her brother is the violinist and conductor Joshua Weilerstein (born in 1987).
A champion of contemporary music, Weilerstein has worked extensively with composers Osvaldo Golijov and Lera Auerbach, as well as with Philadelphia composer Joseph Hallman. She performed the New York premiere of Golijov's Cello Concerto "Azul" at Lincoln Center's Mostly Mozart Festival, the world premiere of Auerbach's 24 Preludes for Cello and Piano at the Caramoor International Music Festival, Auerbach's transcription of Shostakovich Op. 34 for Cello and Piano at the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, and Hallman's Cello Concerto with the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra.
Weilerstein has received a number of honors. In 2000-2001 she won an Avery Fisher Career Grant and was selected to play in the ECHO "Rising Stars" program and Chamber Music Society II, the young artists' program of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. In 2006 she was awarded the Leonard Bernstein Prize at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. In 2011 she received a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant".
She plays a 1790 William Forster Cello.
- Alisa Weilerstein & Vivian Hornik Weilerstein: Works for Cello and Piano (recording in the EMI Classics "Debut" Series) (EMI 5 73498 2)
- The Weilerstein Trio, with Donald Weilerstein (violin), Alisa Weilerstein (cello) and Vivian Hornik Weilerstein (piano): Dvořák Trios (recording from Koch International Classics) (Koch B000CC4W14)
- Joseph Hallman: Cello Concerto (St. Petersburg) (live recording of premiere performance): Alisa Weilerstein (cello) and the St. Petersburg (Russia) Chamber Philharmonic, Jeffery Meyer, conductor and Artistic Director (jhallmanmusic 884502022742).
- Alisa Weilerstein, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Jiri Belohlavek (Cond.): Dvořák Cello Concerto (Decca 0289 478 5705)
- Alisa Weilerstein, Staatskapelle Berlin, Daniel Barenboim (Cond): Edward Elgar Cello Concerto op. 85, Elliott Carter Cello Concerto, Max Bruch Kol Nidrei op. 47 (Decca 0289 478 2735)
Audio only version
- "MacArthur Fellows Program: Meet the 2011 Fellows". September 20, 2011. John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Retrieved 20 September 2011.
- "Alisa Weilerstein in rehearsal with Jonathan Gilad at the 2008 Verbier Festival". YouTube. 2008-07-22. Retrieved 2012-08-07.
- "Donald Weilerstein Biography - The Banff Centre". Banffcentre.ca. Retrieved 2012-11-26.
- "The St. Petersburg Chamber Philharmonic | Concert Seasons | 2007-08". St-pcp.org. Retrieved 2012-11-26.
- [dead link]
- Alisa Weilerstein Official website
- Hear Alisa Weilerstein in concert from WGBH Boston
- Cellist Alisa Weilerstein Wins Leonard Bernstein Prize