A graduate of the Juilliard School, cellist Avery Waite is an active performer, teacher and international music education advocate. A recipient of a 2016-2017 Fulbright Grant to study and perform Hindustani music in India, Avery is excited by the transformative impact of music education and cultural exchange. He is involved in a wide range of education programs, social justice initiatives, and cultural diplomacy projects and has taught overseas at music programs in the Middle East, Asia, Central America and the Caribbean.
In his current role as project leader for MusAid, a music education non-profit organization, he works to support music programs in countries emerging from poverty and conflict by coordinating volunteer teaching workshops and instrument donations. Avery is also on faculty with American Voices, a US state department sponsored organization at the forefront of cultural diplomacy through its work in cross-cultural engagement. As a teacher with American Voices, Avery has led classical chamber music and orchestral workshops in Turkmenistan, Lebanon and Iraq. From 2012-2013, he was based in Kabul Afghanistan, teaching at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music and was a co-director of the widely acclaimed Afghan Youth Orchestra’s tour to the USA.
As a concert cellist, Avery has appeared at Avery Fisher Hall, The Kennedy Center, Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall and has performed solo in concert halls around the world. Avery has been a featured performer on Sesame Street and was also recently selected to perform in concert with Itzhak Perlman at the Perlman Music Program. A proponent of contemporary music, Avery has collaborated with many composers, including George Crumb and Charles Wuorinen, and has been featured multiple times on the Summergarden New Music Series at MoMA in New York.
Avery is also an active composer and arranger. Inspired and moved by his experiences teaching and performing abroad, he has done extensive arranging of traditional Indo-Afghan and Central Asian folk music. Avery performs this music with his ensemble Drifting East and the group recently released its debut album entitled "Songs and Melodies of Afghanistan." Selections from these arrangements were recently performed at the Spoleto Music Festival in Charleston (SC) and at The Juilliard School.
Avery completed his undergraduate studies at Oberlin Conservatory in 2010 and received a Masters degree from The Juilliard School in 2012.