Matti Niemisto


Hi! I am Matti Niemisto and I am 17 years old. I currently study at Bellevue Community College as a running start student through Mercer Island High School. I have started the cello when I was 5 years old with Barbara Salkin and I am currently studying under Walter Gray, a Seattle Symphony musician. I have also played the viola for 6 years.

I have been part of the Mercer Island School District music program for 6 years, and in the Bellevue Youth Symphony (BYSO) for 7 years, 4 of which were in the Youth division. As a freshman and sophomore in high school, I participated in the WMEA All-State Orchestra, and also as a sophomore I performed the Hayden Cello Concerto with BYSO. As a junior I made the Youth division of the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra (SYSO). I have also participated in the complete program at Seattle Young Artist Music Festivals for 3 years, being awarded the Seal of Outstanding Achievement all three times.

I really enjoy being in string ensembles and have been in numerous ones thus far for many occasions. I founded and lead the Islander String Quartet through 4 years of successful music that entertained all audiences in many different events throughout the state. Other groups include a clarinet quintet which participated in the All-State Solo and Ensemble competition in Ellensburg, the first string ensemble out of Mercer Island High School to do so. The current and most successful group I am participating in is the Calliope Trio. After 2 years, this group has received many achievements including representation of top students of the Pacific Northwest School of Music, leading the Scholarship Ensemble Program through (SYSO), and performing Beethoven's Triple Concerto with the Seattle Summer Symphony and the Marrowstone Program of the summer of 2008.

Aside from music I really enjoy sailing, skiing, basketball, soccer, chess, traveling, hanging out with friends, and the nature. For nearly a year and a half, my family have lived in a small sailboat and we have floated all around Europe, across the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean, and the East Coast. I know a little bit of German and I travel quite often to Europe (mostly Germany and Finland) because that is where all our family is located. I hope to study abroad for a year in Europe and circumnavigate the world on a sailboat of my own.