Born into a family of string players in 1974, Scott studied violin/viola with Barbara Barstow and Emanuel Vardi and composition with Richard Lane. At eighteen, he was one of the youngest graduates of the Manhattan School of Music, and he was performing daily as the solo violist for the 1992-1993 New York City production of Gerald Busby's violacentric Orpheus In Love. Scott premiered Busby's Muse for Solo Viola in Carnegie's Weill Hall; gave countless solo recitals; performed frequently as a chamber musician; and wrote for, soloed with, and played in orchestras. Scott can be heard playing solo Bach, Paganini Caprices, and some of his own compositions on various soundtracks for film and TV. His 1998 recording of the complete cycle of J.S. Bach's Sonatas and Partitas was the first of its kind on viola. He served as a committee member, judge, and performer for the inaugural Maurice Gardner Composition Competition and has been commissioned by the American Viola Society and the Primrose International Viola Competition. During the COVID pandemic of 2020, Scott transformed his recital series 'Greatest Hits from the Twenties' into an online educational presentation and made a series of unaccompanied, unedited 'COVID Concert' YouTube videos including the complete solo viola works of Hindemith, Reger, and Slapin. He has written more than sixty violacentric recital works in addition to music for orchestra and educational materials for beginning string players.
Scott and Tanya have taught at several academies and colleges and expanded the repertoire for two violas through many premieres, their own pioneering arrangements, and Scott's compositions. They maintain private viola and violin studios online and have reached students on five continents via Skype. Scott also teaches composition and music theory. The Slapin-Solomon Viola Duo's albums have garnered praise in Strad, the New York Violist, the All Music Guide, and the Journals of the American and Canadian Viola Societies. Scott's solo recordings have received critical acclaim in the American Record Guide, Fanfare, Mundo Clásico, Musical Opinion, and Strad. Scott is a former artist in residence at the American Viola Society and former fellow at the Montalvo Arts Center in California. He and Tanya live in South Hadley, Massachusetts. For more information, visit scottslapin.com and violaduo.com.
"Slapin is a real virtuoso..."
American Record Guide
"...great talent not only as a violist but as a composer"
Journal of the American Viola Society
"Slapin's magnificent playing says 'Bring it on!'"
"Scott Slapin is great!"
“well-designed music…emotionally expressive and varied”
New Jersey Star Ledger
"the virtuosity and musicality of Scott Slapin's performances...surely cannot be improved upon."