Dawn Avery, a cellist and scholar, has been melding modern classical music with her Mohawk lineage for several decades. Exposed to jazz, rock, classical, and more at a young age in Manhattan, Avery simultaneously began studying cassettes of the Mohawk language. She seeks to mitigate what she calls a “disconnect” between audience and musician in her concerts, and to “create communities through music.”
Amid other accolades, Avery’s career has earned her a Grammy nomination, a role in the American Composers Forum’s First Nations Composer Initiative and the North American Indian Cello Project, and multiple Broadway performances. She currently teaches in the world music program at Montgomery College.
Footage courtesy of Dawn Avery and Montgomery College Television