Oregon Symphony Musician Bio
Eileen Deiss remembers seeing a violin for the first time and thinking, “This is it!”
A member of the Oregon Symphony since 1976, Eileen grew up in a musical setting and began learning violin at age five. She played with her mother, a pianist, and attended Los Angeles Philharmonic concerts and recitals. During her elementary and teenage years, Eileen was involved with school music programs and local youth orchestras. She also studied privately with Leona Neblett. Eileen attended the University of California at Santa Barbara on a music scholarship and graduated with a B.A. in Music Performance.
After college, Eileen moved to the Bay Area and began taking lessons with Frank Houser of the San Francisco Symphony. She spent a year obtaining her California teaching certificate and then began teaching elementary school-aged children. Over the course of the next eight years, Eileen furthered her studies in the Los Angeles area with Eudice Shapiro, Joachim Chassman, and Mehli Mehta. She also played with many community orchestras and smaller ensembles in the Los Angeles area.
Eileen and her husband moved to Portland in 1976, where she taught in Portland-area schools for a year and joined the Oregon Symphony. She also freelanced in other Portland-area groups. When Eileen is not performing, rehearsing, or teaching, she enjoys her family life with her husband and visiting with their two adult sons.