Karen De Silva
Karen de Silva is a jazz violinist, composer and arranger. Having practised law, she
gave up her legal career to pursue her passion for music, graduating with First Class Honours from Goldsmiths’ College University of London, majoring in jazz performance. A frequent performer at concerts and outreach programmes including Singjazz, Fete de la Musique, JB Arts Festival, JB Jazz Festival, the Asia Pacific Wataboshi Music Festival, One Music Camp Japan and several of Esplanade’s concert series (Jazz in July, Red Dot Radio, Come Together, Kalaa Utsavam, amongst
others) she has performed in Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, Japan, Korea, China and Vietnam.
Karen has led several ensembles including Viva Strings (contemporary string quartet), AcoustiKa Jazz Quartet and collaborative band rustiKa, performing and/or conducting workshops at arts and jazz festivals in Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Her performance and composition explorations traverse the musical spirit of the acoustic and electric spectrums through the medium of jazz. She has also formed a jazz large ensemble, Stringers and Swingers which showcases her compositions
and arrangements melding the aesthetics of a classical string quartet with the jazz rhythm section.
Karen performs with established figures such as Louis Soliano as well upcoming artists, Toh Tze Chin. In 2016, she was commissioned to arrange and perform several jazz pieces for A Date With A Legend: Louis Soliano featuring Benny Green, Dezron Douglas & Andrew Lim at Resorts World Theatre, where her original song Zapin Grooves was featured. Karen was also recently commissioned to write a suite of classical-jazz crossover works which premiered at the Ho Chi Minh Conservatory, Vietnam in March 2017.
A versatile performer, Karen’s repertoire includes jazz, pop, latin, fusion and classical music and to date has performed at various hotels and establishments (e.g. Marina Bay Sands (Rise Lounge), The Fullerton, Clifford Pier, Conrad, Alkaff Mansion, Hard Rock Café, Gardens by the Bay, Singapore Island Country Club, The Swiss Club, Montreaux Jazz Club etc.) for several public and private events. Karen performs with Mantravine, a world music-chill out band and mariachi ensemble Los Cucurrus which features Mexican and Latin music. She is also a session musician and recording artist.