Hailed by San Francisco's Civic Center for her "...professional and highest caliber of playing," Los Angeles-based cellist Mikala Schmitz is an avid performer of many different styles of cello playing. Ms. Schmitz often finds herself crossing over into a variety of musical genres. From Americana folk, to classical, jazz, electronic, and baroque, Mikala continues to find new and fascinating collaborative avenues. Fostering her love for crossover, Ms. Schmitz joined the piano trio Take3 in 2019 and has been touring the world with them since then. With a flair for the wild and unexpected, the genre-defying trio, TAKE3, brings the refinement of a rigorous classical music background and infuses it with rock-star charisma.
When not on the road, Ms. Schmitz performs and collaborates regularly with musicians and composers in the Los Angeles area. Mikala's work with the English rock group The Last Shadow Puppets took her all over Europe, playing for sold-out audiences nationally and internationally. Mikala has performed and toured with Tim Robbins and the Rogues Gallery Band, and you can also hear her on television shows such as Netflix's Chef's Table and HBO's The Brink. Ms. Schmitz also worked with Tim Robbins’s and is acting troupe, The Actors’ Gang, on their production of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, as well as an original production, The New Colossus. The international tours made their way through China, Italy, the United States, Brazil, France, and Spain. The score for the production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, co-written by Ms. Schmitz and music director David Robbins, received a 2014 Ovations Honors for Composition for a Play.
Mikala holds a B.M. degree from Oberlin College Conservatory, where she studied cello with Darrett Adkins, as well as baroque cello and viola da gamba with Catharina Meints. Ms. Schmitz also holds a M.M. degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where she studied with The Cleveland Orchestra's assistant principal cellist, Richard Weiss, and played with the Case/CIM Baroque Orchestra and the Case Western Reserve Viol Consort. Additionally, Ms. Schmitz has participated in numerous music festivals, including Encore School for Strings, Aspen Music Festival and School, the Tanglewood Music Festival for two summers, and the American Bach Soloists Festival Academy.