The newest member of Invert, Chris Jenkins brings to the group his extensive training in classical music with some of the best violists and musicians in the world. At Harvard, where he earned a BA in Music, he studied viola with Michelle LaCourse, chair of Boston Universit's string department, and received coachings in chamber music from the famed pianist Robert Levin, Lydian Quartet violinist Daniel Stepner, and the composers John Harbison and Yehudi Wyner. His quartet reached the semifinal round of the Fischoff Competition in 2001. In 2003 he earned a Master¹s degree at New England Conservatory with Martha Katz, founding violist of the internationally recognized Cleveland Quartet. In 2004, he finished a Professional Studies degree at the Manhattan School of Music, where he worked with Karen Dreyfus, former winner of the Naumburg and Tertis Competitions, and Michael Tree, violist of the award-winning Guarneri Quartet. In addition, he has studied in Austria with Thomas Riebl of the Vienna String Sextet, and with Heidi Castleman of Juilliard. As a Fellow at the Perlman Music Program, he was coached by Itzhak Perlman and traveled with the program to Shanghai, where he played with and coached Chinese students.
Chris' background has not been confined to classical music. He began his studies in jazz violin with Julie Lyonn Lieberman in 1993. In 2003, he traveled to England with George Russell and his Living Time Orchestra, a group composed of some of the best jazz players in Europe and America. There he performed Russell's "Dialogue With Ornette," for three keyboards and solo violin, at The Royal Northern Academy of Music in Manchester, and in London's Barbican Hall.
A dedicated teacher and coach, Chris teaches violin and viola at the Bloomingdale School of Music in New York. He has previously coached chamber groups at Harvard and taught violin in Cambridge, MA. The rest of his time is spent touring with chamber groups and freelancing in New York City. As a violist in the Sphinx Quartet, he has given quartet and solo performances at the Walnut Hill School in Boston, in Cincinnati, Cleveland, Detroit, and Bermuda. The quartet gives its debut in Carnegie Hall's Isaac Stern Auditorium in December 2003, and in Weill Recital Hall in January 2004. In the string octet The Young Eight, he has taught and performed in North Carolina, and toured California and Nevada. As a 2003 and 2004 semifinalist of the Sphinx Competition, he plays on a 2002 Marcello Villa, a Cremonese viola, generously loaned by David Kerr in agreement with the Sphinx Organization.