Pamela Highbaugh Aloni

Pamela Highbaugh Aloni
Associate Professor
Cello, String Chamber Music, Strings Mentoring

MM (Indiana), BMus (California State University, Northridge)

Area of expertise

Cello, String Chamber Music, Strings Mentoring


Praised for her “meltingly beautiful solos” The Detroit News and for performances of “depth and insight” Times Colonist, Cellist Pamela Highbaugh Aloni has enjoyed performing both as a chamber musician and soloist in North America and Europe. Pamela is a co-founding member of the Lafayette String Quartet, Artists-in-Residence at the University of Victoria. With the ensemble in their early years she won prizes in the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, the Portsmouth (England) International String Quartet Competition, the Cleveland String Quartet Residency Competition and in 1988 was cited as one of Musical America’s “Young Artists to Watch”. The Lafayette Quartet has since remained a part of the chamber music scene for over thirty years with the same original members. 

A native of California, Pamela began her career in California and later in Detroit, Michigan, where she served as principal cellist with the Renaissance City Chamber Players. She was a Ford Motor Company Artist-in-Residence at the Center for Creative Studies Institute of Music and Dance and a faculty member at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. She earned her BMus and MMus degrees in music from California State University, Northridge and Indiana University, respectively. She has been fortunate to work with many wonderful cellists over the years in masterclasses and summer programs. Her principal teachers have included, Peter Rejto, Janos Starker and Paul Katz.

Since 1991, Ms. Highbaugh Aloni has been an Artist-in-Residence at the University of Victoria where she teaches both cello and chamber music courses. It is from this base in Victoria that she and the members of the quartet have continued to perform and record while maintaining their leadership in one of the strongest university string programs in Canada. Over the years, the quartet has taken on many projects such as celebrating the millennium year 2000 by devoting their season to the performance of all sixteen string quartet of Ludwig van Beethoven; performing all of the second Viennese School in 2013 and in 2016-2017 performing the entire Shostakovich Cycle to honor their 30th anniversary and dear mentor Rostislav Dubinsky from the Borodin string quartet. The members of the quartet have created and sustained Quartet Fest West, a summer chamber music workshop held at the UVic. They have recorded numerous recordings to critical acclaim and were awarded “Outstanding Classical Recording of the Year” by the Western Canada Music Awards. In 2009 Pamela along with her colleagues received a Degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa from University of Canada West in recognition of their outstanding achievements in Music and Community.

Pamela also performs with various chamber ensembles and in solo recitals. She has performed as soloist with the Victoria Chamber Orchestra and has been a guest artist with various chamber groups including the Vetta Ensemble of Vancouver, the Victoria Summer Festival, Eine Kleine Summer Music, Chamber Music San Juan, the Victoria Symphony’s Summer Cathedral Series and was principal cellist with the Galiano Ensemble throughout its eighteen years as an ensemble.

A devoted educator, she served on the faculty at the Courtenay Youth Music School and Festival in Upper Vancouver Island for ten years and has been the cello coach for the Greater Victoria Youth Orchestra for over a decade. Along with her colleagues in the quartet she has developed Canada’s only MMus Degree in Performance with an emphasis in String Quartet and along with Ann Elliott Goldschmid received a BC superintendent’s award of recognition from BCSSA for her work in developing the strings mentoring and pedagogy course which since 2001 has brought UVic students into the school district’s string programs together enhancing the learning opportunities at all levels.

She plays on a George Craske Cello made in England, 1850.