Yumi Kendall

Assistant Principal Cello, The Philadelphia Orchestra

Yumi Kendall joined The Philadelphia Orchestra in September 2004 as Assistant Principal Cellist, immediately following graduation from the Curtis Institute of Music, where she studied with David Soyer and Peter Wiley. She began studying cello at the age of five following the Suzuki approach; at age 16, while studying with David Hardy, Ms. Kendall made her solo debut at the Kennedy Center with the National Symphony Orchestra.

Ms. Kendall’s festival and chamber music activities include Music from Angel Fire, Marlboro, Kingston Chamber Music Festival, the East Coast Chamber Orchestra, the Smithsonian’s 21st Century Consort, and the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society. She has appeared as guest principal cellist for the Toronto and Baltimore symphony orchestras, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and the Hyogo Performing Arts Center Orchestra in Japan. In addition to maintaining a private teaching studio, Ms. Kendall has regularly served on the faculties of the National Orchestral Institute and New York State School for Orchestral Studies, as well as Brevard Music Center and Miami Summer Music Festival.

Beyond orchestral, chamber, and solo performing and teaching, Ms. Kendall most recently served on the board of Astral Artists and currently serves on the board of the Greater Philadelphia Suzuki Association, Project440, and on the advisory board of the Young Women’s Composers Camp. In 2017, she graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) to further her off-stage growth and organizational studies. Since then, Ms. Kendall has appeared as a guest presenter and facilitator for a Board retreat of the Suzuki Association of the Americas; the Radnor-based management consulting firm CRA, Inc.; as a keynote speaker at the 2019 inaugural Suzuki Convention of the Americas in Mexico attended by representatives from 27 countries; and for Jefferson Hospital medical students in their Music and Medicine seminar. Ms. Kendall’s interest in organizational psychology and development stems from her belief in classical music’s powerful role in human flourishing, and the importance of cultivating healthy organizations as pathways to serve the arts and public community.

Ms. Kendall was the 2013 recipient of The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Kuhn Award, given annually to “the member of the Philadelphia Orchestra who has shown ability and enterprise of such character as to enhance the standards and reputation of The Philadelphia Orchestra”. A proud Suzuki alumnus, Ms. Kendall founded The Suzuki Alumni Project in 2016, as a way for those who grew up with the Suzuki approach to celebrate Suzuki education and express gratitude to the movement’s teachers all over the globe for believing in their students’ potential, and that of all children.

Asst. Principal Cellist, The Philadelphia Orchestra