"LIFT challenges the sonic limits of the string quartet...
this piece is a must-hear."
Osaka Yomiuri TV
"So full of earthy vitality and sheer sensual pleasure that it made you happy to be alive."
Washington Post

"Incredible artistry"
Boston Musical Intelligencer

"Extraordinary cello-playing"
Jewish Journal of L.A.

"Fresh and full-blooded"
Washington Post
"So light and graceful it was nearly weightless, with detailed and utterly transparent playing."
Washington Post
"Paul's voice is a shade above a whisper. His music is sure and defined."
Los Angeles Times
"Surprising, fun, fresh, and even innovative."
scores available on
❖ wiancko editions→

Paul Wiancko has led an exceptionally multi-faceted musical life as a cellist, composer, and collaborator.

While earning cello performance degrees at the University of Southern California and the Colburn School with Ronald Leonard, Paul won top prizes at several international cello competitions which led him, most notably, to Poland to perform the Lutoslawski Cello Concerto with the Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra, and to Brazil where he performed the Shostakovich Concerto with the Bahia Symphony at the Teatro Nacional.

Leading a double life, Paul converted his dorm room into a production studio and began arranging and recording strings for local underground punk artists, eventually leading to collaborations with bands like Pennywise, Veruca Salt, and Yellowcard. Paul's productions, which range from experimental orchestral works to gospel funk tunes, can be heard on numerous albums and film scores. Ever the versatile musician and improviser, Paul has toured and performed extensively with Jóhann Jóhannsson, Chick Corea, and others, while working closely with them on arrangements. He appears on two of Corea's albums, including Hot House, which won a Grammy in 2013. He has also had the honor of performing with the late Etta James at the Hollywood Bowl, and with Stanley Clarke at the Montreal Jazz Festival.

Paul spent many summers nurturing his love for chamber music at the Aspen, Perlman, Olympic, and Marlboro Music Festivals, where he performed with members of the Guarneri, Juilliard, and Ysaye Quartets. He has also had the pleasure of performing with Midori, Yo-Yo Ma, Peter Wiley and Richard Goode, among many others. After moving to New York in 2009, Paul joined the award-winning Harlem String Quartet, with whom he spent 3 years performing and teaching extensively throughout the US, Europe, South America, and Africa. Paul currently writes and performs as a member of the dynamic viola/cello duo Ayane & Paul, as well as the folk-inspired Bird's-Eye Trio, and tours regularly with the East Coast Chamber Orchestra (ECCO) and American Contemporary Music Ensemble (ACME).

Winner of the 2018 S&R Foundation Washington Award for Composition, one of Paul's first large-scale works was a highly virtuosic concerto for cello, orchestra, and electronics. Entitled "Tales From Bent City," the piece blends Paul's passion for hip-hop and improvisation with his love of the great 19th century late-romantic composers, and its New York premiere was hailed by Sequenza21 as "surprising, fun, fresh, and innovative." Paul has since composed works for the Grammy-winning Parker Quartet, Met Opera soprano Susanna Phillips, cellist Judith Serkin, violist Ayane Kozasa, yMusic, Boston Cello Quartet, Bargemusic, and many others, and has been the composer-in-residence at the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts, Twickenham, Newburyport, and Methow Valley Chamber Music Festivals. Paul recently completed composing the score for the new prison-drama feature film Heartlock, as well as a Mars-exploration-based work for solo piano commissioned by NASA scientist Dr. Peter Smith.

Paul performs on a 2010 Mario Miralles violoncello and lives in Brooklyn, New York. Though cello was his first love, Paul also enjoys playing guitar, bass, violin, viola, harmonica, berimbau, shamisen and theremin. He is passionate about woodworking and hiking, and never travels without a Tenkara rod. [plain text bio]

With Chick Corea at the Blue Note
With EL VY on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert
Photo: Leonardo Ramirez
With Dawn of Midi at the Ecstatic Music Festival
Photo: Charina Pitzel
With Terry Riley at National Sawdust
Lutoslawski Concerto with Polish Radio Symphony
With Mark Morris Dance Group
Photo: Charina Pitzel
With Chick Corea and Gary Burton
Photo: Leonardo Ramirez

Tales from Bent City Cello, electronics, orchestra
2008, 10'
Talk Cello duo
2010, 6'
Buffalo Dies with Grace Cello quartet
2010, 5'
Toy Bricks ❖ Violin, 2 celli, bass
2013, 8'
Strange Beloved Land ❖ String quartet
2013, 18'
A Sanguine Clockwork ❖ Violin, viola, cello
2013, 9'
Ice Caves Violin, 2 celli, piano
2013, 15'
Merry Gentleman's Dream 5-str violin, rhode
2013, 5'
Breathe Cello duo
2014, 6'
American Haiku ❖ Viola & cello
2015, 10'
Our Rusty Planet Solo piano
2015, 7'
cicada songs Soprano, quartet, bassoon
2015, 15'
Busy Signals 10 partially buried pianos
2015, 8'
thous&ths Mixed sextet (yMusic)
2015, 8'
LIFT String quartet
2016, 25'
Maniacal Swing
from LIFT ❖
String quartet
2016, 1'
Heartlock Original Film Soundtrack
2016, 110'
Closed Universe Solo cello, piano quartet, glockenspiel
2016, 7'
Sonata for Viola & Piano
"Buoyant Forces"
Viola, piano
2017, 24'
Cello Quartet Op. 1
"When the Night"
4 celli
2017, 8'

❖ these scores available at

Ayane & Paul
Union Pool
Brooklyn, NY
Performance with Pauchi Sasaki
Deutsches Theater
Berlin, Germany
Aizuri Quartet performs Wiancko: LIFT
7PM @ The Metropolitan Museum of Art
New York, NY
Max Richter's SLEEP (US premiere)
Featuring ACME
11:30PM-8AM @ SXSW
Austin, TX
Max Richter's SLEEP
Featuring ACME
Shed 10, Queens Wharf
Auckland, New Zealand
Evermay Chamber Music Series
With Ayane Kozasa, Jennifer Curtis & Amy Yang
Wiancko: Viola Sonata "Buoyant Forces", Brahms Piano Quartet, Ysaye "Le Chimay"
Washington, DC
Bird's Eye Trio
Mallarme Chamber Concerts
Carrboro, NC
Ayane & Paul
Rutgers University
Camden, NJ
S&R Foundation
Washington Award Ceremony
Washington, DC
The Holy Presence of Joan d'Arc for 10 cellos
7:30PM @ The Kennedy Center
Washington, DC
Max Richter's SLEEP
Featuring ACME
New York, NY
Singapore International Festival of Arts
Performance with Nico Muhly
8PM @ SOTA Drama Theater
NDSU Chamber Music Festival
With Grace Park and Alice Yoo
Fargo, ND
Ayane & Paul perform This Alien Nation
Wiancko: American Haiku
7PM @ Joe's Pub/Public Theater
New York, NY
Banff Festival with the Parker Quartet
"EQ:Evolution of the String Quartet"
Banff, Canada
Piedmont Chamber Music Festival
Piedmont, CA
Piedmont Chamber Music Festival
Piedmont, CA
Shaker Barn Music with Anna & Elizabeth
Hancock Shaker Village, Pittsfield, MA
Emerald City Music
With Kristin Lee, Bella Hristova, Ayane Kozasa, Daxun Zhang, and JP Jofre
Wiancko: American Haiku, Bottesini, Piazzolla
Seattle, WA
Emerald City Music
With Kristin Lee, Bella Hristova, Ayane Kozasa, Daxun Zhang, and JP Jofre
Wiancko: American Haiku, Bottesini, Piazzolla
Olympia, WA
SEP 27-
OCT 15
Max Richter's SLEEP
Featuring ACME
US Tour
Raleigh Civic Symphony
Wiancko: New work TBA

Peter Askim, conductor
Raleigh, NC
Bach Gamut Ensemble
Church of the Holy Trinity
Philadelphia, PA