“Inside Worlds:” SUU’s Satellite Salon Series

Southern Utah University’s music department is hosting “Inside Worlds,” their second Satellite Salon Series concert on Saturday, Jan. 22 at 7 p.m. in the Thorley Recital Hall. 

The featured artist is violist Shalini Vijayan, whose impressive career spans over 20 years. The program will be eight short pieces — six of which will be accompanied by Director of Percussion Lynn Vartan. Vijayan’s two solo pieces will feature electronics. 

The Satellite Salon Series consists of two annual concerts in September and January. Vartan invites guest artists from her musical world to perform and teach a masterclass to SUU  and high school students. 

Vijayan started playing violin when she was four years old, falling in love with music with the help of teachers and high school music directors. 

She said in an interview with Brightwork New Music that “High school was the period of my life when music really came alive. I wanted everything in my life to be about music and I didn’t want to think or deal with anything else.”

From 1998 to 2001, Vijayan performed as a member and served as a concertmaster for the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Florida. In 2000, she gained more experience as a concertmaster, recording Steven Mackey’s “Tuck and Roll” and performing world premieres of the record. 

“There is a special beauty and closeness when you play with someone you have known and collaborated with for over 10 years,” said Vartan. “Shalini was our first Satellite Salon guest back in 2009 and our friendship and time as musicians together go back even before that. She is such an artist with a career and character to match so I can’t wait to be on stage with her again.”

Vijayan has been a part of several musical groups including Lyris Quartet, Kristjan Jarvi’s Absolute Ensemble and Grammy Award-winning Southwest Chamber Music. Collaboration with these groups allowed her to record several albums and perform in venues like the Barbican and The Concertgebouw. 

In recent years, Vijayan worked as a soloist with the Los Angeles Master Chorale to perform Chinary Ung’s “Spiral Xll” and Tan Dun’s “Water Passion.” She is also on the performance faculty for the Nirmita Composers Workshop in Cambodia, whose mission is to increase arts education for public schools and develop career opportunities for Cambodian artists. 

The concert is free and students can find more information on the SUU Arts website

Story By: Addie Horsley
Photo Courtesy of Shalini Vijayan