Colette began playing the cello at the age of 4 at the Institute of Music and Dance in downtown Detroit, Michigan. Her earliest and fondest memories of music are climbing the stairs to take Orff lessons in the old building on Kirby (now demolished), and sneaking off in between orchestra and group cello class to get some Cheetos from the snack machine in the basement.

Interlochen, Meadowmount, and concerto competitions (traditions of classical music training) all followed. But, she also loved listening to her father’s rockabilly band perform, and was inspired by the string arrangements peppering her favorite bands’ albums as a teenager - Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Tori Amos, Bjork, PJ Harvey, Loreena McKennitt, and REM.

Attending Sarah Lawrence College allowed the discovery of classical improvisation, and newer more contemporary styles of classical music. Her graduate studies at California Institute of the Arts focused on contemporary classical cello performance with Erika Duke-Kirkpatrick and Lucky Mosko as her mentors. 

Since graduating with an MFA in cello performance from CalArts, she’s been lucky enough to work with many artists in concert and in the studio, including Rilo Kiley, Jens Lekman, Girls in Trouble, Josh Groban, The Pop-Ups, Angelique Kidjo, Sara Bareilles, Saturday Looks Good to Me, Matt Jones & the Reconstructions, Drafted by Minotaurs, and Greg Laswell.

She currently resides in New York, NY where she continues to record and perform with various artists.


Photographer: Doug Coombe

Performing with Matt Jones & the Reconstruction at the Ark in Ann Arbor, September 2014