MaryGrace Bender

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Cellist MaryGrace Bender is a performer, teacher, and believer in the beauty of music

and the important impact it has on how we see the world. As a Suzuki teacher, she

leads a full studio of cellists in the Nashville area, as well as a studio in Huntsville.

MaryGrace founded the Nashville Chamber Music Society, which is a 501(c)(3)

organization and performs on a regular basis with NashvilleCMS in a variety of spaces

for a variety of audiences. This past summer, MaryGrace taught at Stringtime in DC, a

festival for young musicians, and previously served as a faculty member and performer

for Lincoln Center’s Restart Stages series for BridgeMusik in NYC. She regularly

records in Nashville for scoring companies such as Sony, Bungee, Hulu, and Netflix,

and enjoys coaching NashvilleCMS program chamber groups. She performed with the

McDuffie Center for Strings in Carnegie Hall, as Young Artist for The Rome Chamber

Music Festival in Italy, and recorded orchestrally under Philip Glass’s Orange

Mountain Music label which The Wall Street Journal reviewed as, “impeccably


MaryGrace’s studies include a master’s degree from The Cleveland Institute of Music

in Cello Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy, and an undergraduate degree from The

Robert McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University. She spent summers at The

National Repertory Orchestra, Meadowmount School of Music, Brevard Music Festival,

Chautauqua Summer Institute, and the Aspen Music Festival and School as a New

Horizon’s fellow. Past influential teachers include Dr. Melissa Kraut, Hans Jørgen

Jensen, Julie Albers, Dr. Felix Wang, and Anne Hall Williams. MaryGrace lives in

Huntsville with her husband Blake and their dog, Cooper. They all love the outdoors

and she attempts to keep up with Blake via hiking, biking, skiing, or running.