“Picture an aperture opening and closing. Each medium requires different degrees of focus,” explains ADRIANNA MATEO, a polymath perpetually in evolutionary motion.
Adrianna is a solo violinist, a pop-rock singer-songwriter, and an actress. The constant within her work is imbuing each artistic endeavor with methodical attention and unbound emotional investment.
As a twenty-something performer, Adrianna has been hailed as a “rising artist” by The New York Times. Time Out New York praised her solo debut at the Bang On A Can Marathon as being “triumphant.” Adrianna’s live appearance highlights include The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, performing at Carnegie Hall, simultaneous performances at the Met Museum and the Met Opera (in an acting role), and many international tours, including dates in Europe, South Africa, and Southeast Asia.
Adrianna is a first generation child of Filipino, Spanish, and Chinese parents. Growing up, she instinctively knew she was born into a world of opportunities not afforded to her parents who had to sidestep their creative inclinations for practical realities. At 8 years old, she asked her parents for a violin, and she understood the weighty responsibility that came with the instrument. She had to make the most of the possibilities available to her through pursuing excellence in music.
With steely resolve Adrianna mastered the violin, often clocking up to 6 hours a day in the practice room. Along the way, her appetite for creativity has been voracious. She’s currently performance proficient on 6 instruments, and she draws from a diverse palette of inspirations. A select cross section of her influences include Bach, Debussy, Keith Jarrett, Bill Evans, Taylor Swift, Jeff Buckley, John Mayer, Jennifer Lawrence, and Jesse Eisenberg.
Adrianna formally announces her pop-rock career with the ethereal epic “Coney Island.” Previously, Adrianna issued the achingly beautiful “August Sun” and the visceral alt-rocker “Like A Little Kid With A Raging Heart.” Adrianna’s pop exudes the sweeping emotional dynamics inherent in classical music with passages that vacillate between lush strings, propulsive drums, burly guitars. “I want to make hearts race,” she says of her artistic intent.
At the core of her songs is a singer-songwriter sense of vulnerability. Her singing exudes a sweet longing – her voice is an instrument of pristine pitch and smoldering expressivity. Her debut single, “Coney Island,” brims with personal revelation. As a kid, Adrianna would pass Coney Island on her morning trek to school. In her mind, the theme park epitomized a freedom and carefreeness just out of reach. Within the song’s narrative, Coney Island is a metaphor for a romantic relationship that threatens to slip through her fingers.
The single’s accompanying video is a stunning piece of intimate performance, showcasing some of Adrianna’s finest work in front of the camera. Her whole life she had been plagued by dreams of drowning. In the video for “Coney Island,” she plays violin while sinking into a pool until she is completely submerged. “While we were making the video, I had to willfully empty my lungs of air and keep the violin from popping up to the surface. It felt like everything was fighting me,” she recalls.
Sage wisdom and scrappy resourcefulness have been hallmarks of Adrianna’s creative odyssey. Many times in her life Adrianna has had a performance itinerary, but not a sure place to live. She’s couch surfed, apartment sat, and pet walked to realize her artistic ambitions. She says: “If you want something, the opportunity always shows itself to you, but it’s up to you to step through the door.”