The Catholic University of America


Michael Mermagen, M. M.
Associate Professor, Cello


Michael Mermagen

Associate Professor, Cello

Michael Mermagen, (M.M. The Juilliard School, B.M. The Peabody Conservatory of Music), associate professor of cello and chamber music, and faculty adviser in orchestral instruments for bachelor's and master's degree students. Made his debut at the age of sixteen with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra after being the recipient of its Young Soloist's Award. Michael began his studies at the Peabody Preparatory where he studied with Paula Skolnick-Childress and Mihaly Virizlay. Principal teachers in college were Stephen Kates at the Peabody Conservatory, and Zara Nelsova at the Juilliard School. As the Juilliard School's concerto competition winner, he performed with the Juilliard Orchestra under Otto-Werner Mueller in Alice Tully Hall. Was soloist with the National Orchestra of New York, where he held the prestigious Emanuel Feuermann principal cello chair. Performed in the Violoncello Society of New York Master Classes lead by Yo-Yo Ma, Janos Starker, and Bernard Greenhouse. Tours regularly with The Aspen Ensemble. Also toured with the American Chamber Players from 1997 to 2003 and from 1987 to 1995 with the Arista Piano Trio, (named Chamber Music America's Artists to Watch). Collaborated with the San Francisco Ballet and was featured as the cello soloist for the New York premiere of two works by the renowned choreographer Mark Morris. Has joined violinist Jody Gatwood and pianist Marilyn Neeley in the Rome Trio, a resident ensemble of The Catholic University of America. Faculty member at the Aspen Music Festival and School and has held the position of principal cellist of the Aspen Chamber Symphony for the past 18 seasons. Performed chamber music in Aspen with such artists as Joshua Bell, Sarah Chang, Lynn Harrell, Robert McDuffie, Susanne Mentzer, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg and The Takács Quartet; collaborated with distinguished conductors, Comissiona, Conlon, Levine, Maazel, Marriner, McGegan, Robertson, Skrowaczewski, Zinman and has given numerous recitals and masterclasses across North America, Europe and Asia. Participated in The Grand Canyon Music Festival, Prince Albert Music Festival in Kauai and the Bay Chamber Concertsin Rockport, Maine. Has been heard on WQXR's Concerts Plus, WNYC's Around New York, and his performances are regularly broadcast on NPR's Performance Today. Also performed live with Musica Sacra on A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor. Performed as a substitute cellist in the New York Philharmonic, Buffalo Philharmonic, New York City Ballet, Orchestra of the Saint Lukes, 92nd Street Y Orchestra, Philharmonia Virtuosi of New York, American Symphony Orchestra, Brooklyn Philharmonic, and Long Island Philharmonic. Recorded the Patrick Zimmerli piano trios, for the Arabesque label, after a celebrated debut of the same pieces at the Seattle Chamber Music Society. Recent appearances include the performance of the Brahms Double Concerto with violinist Livia Sohn and the Stockton Symphony and the Beethoven Triple Concerto with Elisabeth Adkins and Edward Newman and the Fairfax Symphony. He performs on a Nicolo Gagliano cello, Naples, 1774.