Dr. Gwyneth Bravo, PhD

Cello Teacher

Gwyneth Bravo

SAA Member

Gwyneth Bravo is a musicologist, cellist, and educator who has global leadership experience in higher education and in the non-profit sector as a founder and president.

Bravo holds a Ph.D. in Historical Musicology from the University of California, Los Angeles and is an Assistant Professor of Music at NYU Abu Dhabi, where she serves on the NYU-Prague Global Faculty Advisory Committee, the NYUAD Peace Studies Faculty Committee, and the NYUAD Inclusion Equity and Action Committee (2021-). Previously, she was an elected member of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee (2019-2021) and an appointed member of the first NYUAD Arts and Humanities DEI Committee (2015-2016). As the chair of the American Musicological Society Performance Committee in 2021—and a committee member from 2020-2022—she facilitated the lecture-performances for the annual 2021 AMS conference and provided consultancy to the Executive Leadership of the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) for the development and curation of performances featured at its Executive Leadership Conference in 2021. As a task force member of the College Music Society Presidential Taskforce for Leading Change in Music in Higher Education (2021-2023), Bravo worked with colleagues from diverse institutions to conduct an 18-month-long examination of the state of the music profession in-and-out of the academy to develop a vision and strategies for leading change in music in higher education with a focus on creativity, relevance, and, a with renewed commitment to diversity equity, inclusion and belonging. 

Bravo is an experienced leader and advocate for the arts and music in education. She was the founder, president, and executive director of several, US-based, non-profit organizations, which focused on providing access to music programs for underserved children, youth, and communities in diverse contexts. As the Founder and Executive Director of the non-profit Martin Luther King Jr. Cello Program at the Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Sacramento, she developed the program with Artist in Schools and Neighborhood Arts Grants and funding from the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission. As the elected President and Executive Director of the Suzuki Music Association of Los Angeles—the largest chapter in the USA—she led the 600+ membership of the organization in the development of its strategic educational mission in service of communities throughout the Los Angeles region. This included the direction of annual instrument graduations for 300+ students at the Colburn School of the Arts and other sites (violin, viola, cello, piano, guitar, and flute), the development of a scholarship program for children in the greater Los Angeles area, as well as in securing Claremont College as a new site for the SMAC/LA Summer Institute. The institute continues to serve over one hundred children from the Western United States annually.

Born in Los Angeles, Bravo began cello lessons at age twelve with Gretchen Geber. Her principle teachers were Yehuda Hanani at Peabody Institute of John Hopkins University and later Janet Horvath, Tanya Remenikova, and Andrew Luchansky. She holds an M.M. in Cello Performance from California State University, Sacramento and later completed her pedagogical training as a cellist under the direction of Nancy Yamagata, Pam Devenport, Jean Dexter, and Lorraine Fink at the Colburn School of the Arts, the Chicago Institute of Music, and Ithaca College. Bravo has a broad background in the field of education and holds a state of California multiple-subject teaching credential in Cross-cultural, Language, and Academic Development (CLAD) with an additional specialization in music, which she earned from the Bilingual/Multicultural Education Department at California State University, Sacramento. Following a Fulbright Scholarship to Germany, Bravo returned to the USA, where she built a large cello studio in Los Angeles while completing her Ph.D. at the University of California, Los Angeles—and prior moving to the UAE to join the faculty at NYU Abu Dhabi as a musicologist.

In the USA, the UAE, and Europe, Bravo’s work has developed in partnership with diverse cultural and educational institutions. These include the German Fulbright Commission, Berlin-Los Angeles Villa Aurora, Archa Theater Prague, REZN8, the Orel Foundation, Los Angeles Opera, LA Opera-Opera for Educators, Sacramento Metropolitan Art Commission(SMAC), Education Through Music-Los Angeles (ETM-LA), the Suzuki Music Association of Los Angeles (SMAC-LA), Turath Ensemble-Los Angeles, the Abu Dhabi Educational Council (ADEC), the Department of Tourism and Culture’s Abu Dhabi Classics, Abu Dhabi Classic FM Radio, the UAE Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development-Piano Center, the UAE Young Artists Concerto Competition (YACOCO), the Al Ain Youth Festival-Competition: Gardens of Sheikh Zayed, the NYU Abu Dhabi Institute, the NYUAD Hilary Ballon Center for Teaching and Learning, Translucent Borders, and Cambodian Living Arts. Her cello students have been winners and finalists in competitions such as the Kiwanis, the Los Angeles Cello Society Competition, the Los Angeles Philharmonic Young Artist Competition, the Junior Division of the Fischoff National Music Competition (Chamber Music, First Prize), the 2017 United Arab Emirates Best Young Musician of the Year Award (First Prize), and, most recently, the Winner of the 2021 Musivv Award for Best HomeGROWN Emirati Artist of the Year. Bravo lives in with her husband and their daughter who loves playing the cello.