Beginning his musical studies on piano at age two, Ben Fried displayed a penchant for music immediately, falling in love with cello only a year later. Hans Jensen, celebrated pedagogue and faculty at Nothwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, recognized Ben’s talent and love of cello and took him in as a private student when he was only eleven years old. He followed his private studies with formal education at Eastman School of Music (BM), Mannes College of Music (MM), and USC Thornton School of Music (DMA). His mentors were Steven Doane, Timothy Eddy, and Andrew Shulman.
As a concertizing artist, LA Opus has praised Ben Fried as a cellist who “rapidly won over the audience with a spacious and rhythmically free account of the Prelude (Suite No. 6, by Bach)”. He is also a prizewinner of numerous prestigious solo and chamber competitions, including the Grand Prize Virtuosos Competition, Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, USC Thornton Bach Competition, the Eastman Concerto Competition, to name a few. He maintains an international performing career as a soloist and chamber musician, with performances in Canada, Poland, China, Denmark, and Iceland. As a featured soloist with orchestra, Ben has performed alongside the Eastman Philharmonia, Downy Symphony Orchestra, Highland Park Strings, the North Suburban Symphony Orchestra, and has also performed Boulez’s feverishly difficult “Messagaquise” with the Bodies Without Organs new music ensemble.
A passionate chamber musician, Dr. Fried founded the Monterey Piano Trio with his wife Connie Kim-Sheng and colleague Strauss Shi. Meeting as students at USC Thornton School of Music, the group connected through a shared love of the incredibly profound repertoire for the piano trio. Within months of their formation, the trio was invited as artist-in-residence at the Heifetz International Music Institute and has performed throughout the Los Angeles area to much acclaim.
An extremely passionate pedagogue, his students have been successful in many competitions and orchestra auditions. He has served on cello faculty at the California School of the Arts San Gabriel Valley. He is the cofounder of Fried Music and dean of its Pre-College Program, a non-profit full scholarship program for talented and young musicians.