Violinist Bella Rose Kelly was raised in the suburbs of Chicago. Her earliest memories revolve around observing her mother play the piano and pondering over the difference in sound when she herself tried the keys. Once accessible, she delved into improvisation, composition, and exploration. Bella, currently based in Boston, is recognized as both a composer and a violinist. Her introduction to the violin at the age of 9 unveiled a world of exploration, seeing it as a versatile instrument adaptable to various musical genres. This perception led her to engage in a diverse array of ensembles during her upbringing, encompassing orchestras, pit orchestras, jazz bands, chamber groups, combos, choirs, rock bands, and singer-songwriter showcases.
Bella’s scholarly involvements included the Merit School of Music String Orchestra (2013-2015), the 2018 All-State Orchestra (first desk, second violin), the 2018 IHSTF All-State Pit Orchestra, and the Berklee Contemporary Symphony. Her endeavors extended to leading her indie band, Rosesky, where she held the roles of songwriter and frontwoman from 2018 to 2019. Guided by her core performing philosophy, “the more genres you can speak, the more people you can speak to,” she channels her diverse influences into both her concert compositions and electro-acoustic projects.
This trajectory directed her towards Berklee College of Music, where she is currently pursuing studies in composition and screen scoring. A pivotal engagement within Berklee is her participation in the Neither/Nor ensemble led by Dr. Richard Carrick, involving her in multifaceted roles such as performing, conducting, composing, and management. Bella’s academic journey has been supported by notable achievements, including the Charles Dickerman Memorial scholarship for violin, the Berklee World Tour scholarship for violin, and her recognition as a Taco Bell scholar in composition. In this capacity, she exhibited leadership at a Taco Bell scholar event in the summer of 2022, guiding fellow students in enhancing their professional skills and networks.
Bella’s influential mentors encompass Dr. Renée-Paule Gauthier, Mimi Rabson, and Sharan Levanthal. Collaborating with Dr. Gauthier on the Mind Over Finger Podcast for five years, Bella was exposed to insightful conversations with luminaries in classical music such as James Ehnes, Marin Alsop, and Rachel Barton Pine, centered on practice techniques. This exposure equips Bella with a vast wellspring of knowledge to tailor her teaching to individual students. At the heart of her career lies a commitment to democratizing classical music through education, compositions, and innovative concert experiences that foster inclusivity. She emphasizes the importance of striking a balance between establishing strong foundational techniques and nurturing the thrill of exploration in her teaching approach. Weekly listening assignments span a spectrum from Western Classical composers to jazz, rock, pop, fiddle, Indian Classical, Latin jazz, K
Klezmer, and more. This practice underscores the violin’s universal presence and its potential to contribute to global musical dialogues. Through her three and a half years of teaching, Bella cherishes the reminder her students offer of the excitement and joy inherent in embarking on a musical journey for the first time.