Yasmin Craig Vitalius, violin
Where did you grow up? Livermore, CA
Where do you currently live? Yarmouth, ME
What instrument(s) do you play? Violin, Viola, and Piano to accompany my students
Educational background: Stanford University, BA 1997 in Music, Science and Technology with a double concentration in composition and violin performance. Fulbright Fellowship to Ankara Turkey 1997-1999. Studied Turkish Folk Music and performed with the Bilkent Symphony Orchestra. Eastman School of Music, MM 2001 in Violin Performance and Literature.
Personal Information (family, pets, kids, etc.): I live in Yarmouth with my family. My husband, Brit Vitalius, owns a real estate brokerage in Portland. We have a son, Coltrane, named in honor of Jazz saxophone great John Coltrane and a daughter, Allegra, named in honor of the beauty and joy of music.
How did you get started in music? My parents say that I asked to play the violin when I was 4. I have no idea where that came from and they thought I was too young. Finally, after nagging them for two years, they let me have lessons. Music has always been a part of my life and I am very fortunate to be able to perform and teach for a living!
What non-PSO musical activities do you participate in? I have a very active teaching life and serve on the board of the Maine Suzuki Association which supports music education in the state. My students have played at the Yarmouth Clam Festival, Portland Pirates and Sea Dogs games, at Suzuki workshops all over, with the USM Youth Ensembles and at PSO fourth of July and Magic of Christmas concerts.
What’s your favorite PSO memory to date? About 100 Suzuki students were warming up for the fourth of July concert at Ft. Williams with our standard “Twinkle.” From the stage behind them, symphony musicians began to join in. Students started to realize that they were playing WITH the symphony. The looks on their faces were priceless! It’s something they all remember to this day.
Describe a typical day: There is no such thing as a typical day! I often say I work when other people play and I play when other people work. It makes for scheduling together time with family a challenge sometimes! Teaching starts after school hours. Practice and rehearsals for quartet or other independent projects usually happen in the mornings.
What is the question you’re asked most often when you tell people you play with the PSO? How often do you meet in preparation for a concert? Answer: one to three rehearsals before the concert
If you couldn’t be a musician, what would be your dream job? Psycholinguist
Any non-musical hobbies? Languages and travel
What is your favorite music? What are you currently listening to? Non-Classical: Jeff Buckley, Annie Lennox, Joni Mitchell, kd lang
Classical: Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Ravel, Debussy, Beethoven
What/where are your favorite eats in Portland?
Hot Suppa in Portland, Conundrum in Freeport and Gather in Yarmouth.