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A native of the Chicago area, Cathy Basrak is assistant principal viola of the BSO, where she occupies the Anne Stoneman Chair, and principal viola of the Boston Pops Orchestra.

Basrak's teachers include Joseph de Pasquale, principal viola of the BSO from 1947 to 1964, and Michael Tree of the Guarneri String Quartet. She has participated in the Marlboro Music Festival, Banff Centre for the Arts, and Norfolk Chamber Music Festival. In addition, she has performed with the Brandenburg Ensemble and Boston's Metamorphosen Ensemble and appeared as soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicago, Detroit, and Bavarian Radio symphony orchestras, and Boston Pops with John Williams.

Basrak has won several awards, including Grand Prize in the Seventeen Magazine/General Motors National Concerto Competition, First Prize in the William E. Primrose Memorial Scholarship Competition, First Prize in the Irving M. Klein International String Competition, and Second Prize in the 46th International Music Competition of the ARD in Munich.

B.M., Curtis Institute of Music. Studies with Joseph de Pasquale, Michael Tree. Also faculty of the Boston Conservatory, Boston University.

Photo by Marco Borggreve/courtesy BSO


  • Solist, Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicgo, Detroit, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestras, Boston Pops Orchestra
  • Marlboro Music Festival
  • Banff Centre for the Arts
  • Brandenburg Ensemble