Internationally acclaimed Canadian cellist ARLEN HLUSKO is a dynamic and versatile young artist who has performed extensively throughout Asia, Europe, and North America. She has appeared professionally as a soloist and chamber musician in prestigious venues across the world, including Carnegie Hall, Field Concert Hall, Walt Disney Concert Hall, The Kimmel Center's Perelman Theater & Verizon Hall, Roy Thompson Hall, Jack Singer Concert Hall, and Guangzhou Opera House. As a soloist, Arlen has appeared with numerous orchestras (including the Calgary Philharmonic, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, l'Orchestre Symphonique de Sherbrooke, the Kitchener Waterloo Chamber Orchestra, and more), has given recitals across North America and China, and has been a featured performer on WHYY. Arlen is an avid chamber musician and has collaborated with renowned artists such as Ida Kavafian, Donald Weilerstein, Roger Tapping, Roberto Diaz, Hsin-Yun Huang, Ricardo Morales, Lynn Harrell, Tara Helen O'Connor, Andres Diaz, Stephen Taylor, Ronald Leonard, the Tokyo & Miami String Quartets, and members of the Guarneri, Orion, London Haydn, and St. Lawrence String Quartets. Festival appearances include Perlman Music Program's Chamber Music Workshop & Winter Residencies in NY & FL, Music from Angel Fire, the Taos School of Music, Four Seasons Winter Workshop, Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, Avaloch Farm Music Institute, The Banff Centre's Chamber Residency and Masterclasses, Lake George Music Festival, Innsbrook Festival’s Emerging Artists Program, Pinchas Zukerman’s Young Artist Program, and Domaine Forget Chamber Festival. She has performed in Curtis on Tour ensembles across Asia, Europe, and the United States, has mentored and coached younger students at the Curtis Institute of Music, and has been on faculty at Curtis Summerfest. Additionally, Arlen enjoys orchestral playing, and has performed as Principal Cellist of several ensembles, including the Curtis Symphony Orchestra and the New York String Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, and was invited to perform as guest Principal Cellist of The Banff Centre Orchestra.
Arlen is passionate about finding creative ways to use music to serve and enrich her community. She was chosen as a 2015-16 Curtis ArtistYear Fellow, enabling her to spend a year as a citizen-artist dedicated to finding meaningful ways to reach individuals with autism and dementia, mainly focusing on communities that have limited access to the arts. As a continuation of some of this work, Arlen won a 2016 Tarisio Trust Young Artist Grant to found her series, Philadelphia Performances for Autism. Equally committed to pedagogy, she has recently collaborated with teaching artists from the Philadelphia Orchestra; given masterclasses in the United States, Canada, China, and Germany; coached several youth orchestras in the greater Philadelphia area; lead workshops for high school and college aged students on Interactive Performances; and actively maintains a private cello studio in Philadelphia. Since 2011, Arlen has frequently volunteered as both coach and private cello teacher with “Play on, Philly!” and “Youth Orchestra Los Angeles,” and has previous experience teaching advanced placement music theory and ear training at the Colburn School of Performing Arts.
Arlen is a recent graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, where she held the Jacqueline du Pre Memorial Fellowship and studied with Carter Brey and Peter Wiley. Her previous teachers include Andres Diaz, John Kadz, David Hetherington, and Anne Vallentyne. She has won top prizes in several competitions, including Kingsville International Competition's Best Performance by a Cellist and Calgary Kiwanis' coveted Rose Bowl. As principal cellist of the Curtis Symphony Orchestra, Curtis generously loaned Arlen a rare Guadagnini cello from their instrument bank. During the rest of her tenure at school, she was very fortunate to play on a Joseph Hill cello, again generously on loan to her from Curtis' instrument bank.
Arlen is currently based out of the east coast (Philadelphia, NYC, Baltimore) where she regularly collaborates with chamber musicians in such ensembles as Dolce Suono Ensemble, Jupiter Chamber Players, and Network for New Music, and is a member of Symphony in C. She is currently a Teaching Artist for The Philadelphia Orchestra and Project 440, and was previously a Teaching Artist Apprentice with the New York Philharmonic. Arlen is also on the substitute list for the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.
In her spare time, Arlen enjoys fashion design, hiking, photography, swimming, reading, hot yoga, learning about neurology and psychology, and spending time with friends and family. Having grown up in a quiet, rural area of Canada, Arlen finds immense joy in getting outside and exploring nature, and is always up for an adventure.