Performers Certificate Northern Illinois University
MM DePaul University
BM University of Toronto
Cellist Veronica Nettles Kolegas is a versatile performer
and pedagogue based out of Chicago, IL. Recently described as “..alluring..” in the
Wall Street Journal, she focused her performance on Chamber Music and innovative cross-genre
collaborations and dedicates much of her time to teaching artistry
Such cross-genre focuses include Latin American music from
Tango ensembles to Cuban Charanga groups and collaborations in Indo-Jazz and Klezmer
music, incorporating improvised cello. Kolegas was also a part of the Chicago
premiere of Brazilian composerMiguel Kertsman’s educational production of O Saci with the
In the classical realm, Kolegas is most passionate about
chamber music and is a member of the Ursa Ensemble, a group dedicated to presenting music
old and new, commissioning contemporary works and collaborating with
artists of other disciplines. Kolegas leads the ensemble’s Lucida program which provides
educational outreach concerts for youth.
Before her involvement with Ursa, Kolegas was a founding
member of the Kaia String Quartet, and served as cellist and co-manager for six years.
During that time the quartet was the resident ensemble of Chicago’s Latino Music
Festival, promoting contemporary Latin American music, released its debut album,
Latinoamérica and was featured on NPR and WFMT for the quartet’s live performance with Paquito
D’Rivera. Kolegas also toured throughout the States and Mexico with the ensemble,
giving performances and educational presentations.
As a teaching artist, Kolegas draws from various methods of
pedagogy and continuously seeks opportunities to further understand different angles
of education. Her time as an instructor is largely spent teaching both Traditional and
Suzuki private lessons, group classes, chamber music, orchestral sectionals and
masterclasses. She is trained in the Suzuki Method, has been involved in Chicago El Sistema
programs and also utilizes thestructure of the Royal Conservatory of Music (Music
Development Program), the system in which she studied as a student.
Kolegas began cello at the age of nine in Upstate New York.
She later immigrated with her family to Canada where she settled in the Vancouver
region and began her studies with cellist, Harold Birston. As a participant in several
youth orchestras, jazz/concert bands, choirs and chamber ensembles, Kolegas had the
opportunity to broaden her outlook of the cello and all of its capacities. This outlook
has shaped her quest for diversity and innovation in her music for years to follow.
Kolegas received her Bachelors Degree from the University of
Toronto under Shauna Rolston and David Hetherington, her Graduate Degree at
DePaul University under Stephen Balderston and Performers Certificate for String
Quartet Performance with the Avalon Quartet.