Cellist MaryGrace Bender pursues a multi-faceted career in performance, recording, and music education. As a Suzuki teacher, Bender seeks to reach every child through music and prides herself in her students. As an avid collaborative and chamber musician, Bender recently performed with the McDuffie Center for Strings in Carnegie Hall, as Young Artist for The Rome Chamber Music Festival in Italy, and recorded orchestrally under Philip Glass’s Orange Mountain Music label which The Wall Street Journal reviewed as, “impeccably polished.” Bender’s extensive studies include a master's degree from The Cleveland Institute of Music in Cello Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy, and an undergraduate degree from The Robert McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University. She has spent summers at The National Repertory Orchestra, Meadowmount School of Music, The Rome Chamber Music Festival, Brevard Music Festival, Chautauqua Summer Institute, and the Aspen Music Festival and School as a New Horizon's fellow. Past influential teachers include Dr. Melissa Kraut, Hans Jørgen Jensen, Julie Albers, and Dr. Felix Wang. A recipient of the James T. McAfee, Jr. Endowed Vision and Leadership Scholarship, Bender passionately promotes the arts at a grassroots level by teaching and performing in schools, retirement homes, homeless shelters, and concert halls alongside her professional performances and recording projects. Bender enjoys teaching English to international students through her own company, Talk2Crew, spending an evening playing chamber music with friends, and anything outdoors.