Mrs. Amali Premawardhana

Cello, Suzuki in the Schools Teacher

Amali Premawardhana

SAA Member


Lisle, IL

Cellist Amali Premawardhana lives and works in the Chicagoland area as a Suzuki cello teacher and performing orchestral and chamber musician. Previous to her move to the Midwest, she taught Suzuki Strings to Pre-K-2nd grade in the Greenwich, CT Public Schools, where she has served as Director of Suzuki from 2018-2022. She also previously served on the cello faculty at the Greenwich Suzuki Academy.

Amali began her formal studies at Indiana University where she studied with Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi. She earned her bachelors degree in cello at the Manhattan School of Music where she studied with Julia Lichten and Margo Tatgenhorst-Drakos. She completed her masters degree in Music Education at the University of Bridgeport.

As an active chamber musician, Amali co-leads her own ensemble, Karavika, which blends Western chamber music with musical traditions of India and Sri Lanka. Karavika has been hailed by the New York Times as “a soulful blend of classical and folk traditions” and her ensemble has been described by the San Francisco Classical Voice as “commanding performers… suggestive of some of the adventures of such crossover explorers as Edgar Meyer and Yo-Yo Ma.” 

As an orchestral player, Amali has performed with the Distinguished Concerts Orchestra of NY, which plays frequently in major concert halls including Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center.  Amali has taken part in festivals such as the Tanglewood Institute, the New York String Orchestra Seminar, the Learnquest Indian Music Conference, the New Directions Cello Festival, San Francisco’s Classical Revolution Festival, and has performed frequently with Brooklyn Raga Massive in New York City. Amali has had the privilege of performing in master classes with extraordinary cellists such as Yo-Yo Ma and Ron Leonard. Her performing career has taken her across the United States, Paris, Southern France and Sri Lanka.

Amali trained in Suzuki Cello pedagogy at New York School for Strings under the tutelage of Pam Devenport, where she was registered in ECC and Books 1-8. When not teaching or performing, Amali loves spending time with her husband and three children.