Anastásia “An Ya” Yarbrough is a violist and singer-songwriter based in Asheville, NC. The Memphis-native has been performing for over twenty years. At age 17, she was awarded a grant from the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation. She is emerging as an active contribution to the Western North Carolina jazz scene as one of the few jazz violists-singers. She has appeared as a feature artist in a variety of jazz and R&B showcases in the area. Most recently, she was the feature musician for the Asheville Storytelling GrandSlam as part of The Moth Radio Hour. She performs regularly with Michael Jefry Stevens’ Mountain Chamber Jazz Ensemble and the Asheville Jazz Orchestra. She has performed in workshops and master classes led by renowned jazz violinists and violists such as Regina Carter, Mads Tolling, and Matt Maneri. She attended the Stanford Jazz Workshop and performed at the 2015 Stanford Jazz Festival.
In addition to jazz, she performs regularly with the Asheville Symphony, Hendersonville Symphony, and Brevard Philharmonic. She has performed with the Memphis Symphony, Germantown Symphony, Fletcher Opera Institute, Blue Ridge Orchestra, and the Master Players Festival Orchestra. In high school, she toured Europe with the Memphis Youth Symphony. She was a member of the residential Giannini Quartet at the UNC School of the Arts. She performed in master classes led by Kim Kashkashian, Ludwig Schmalhofer, Karen Ritscher, Jennifer Thompson of the Daedalus Quartet, and Sean Lee. She has performed at the Chamber Music Society at Lincoln Center, the Stevens Center for Performing Arts, and New York Live Arts.
She currently teaches middle school orchestra at Carolina Day School and is a regular volunteer at Girls Rock Asheville. She holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Vermont, where she was a McNair Scholar and researched avian ecology and bioacoustics for three years, and a Bachelor of Music in Viola Performance from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts where she studied with Lila Brown and Sheila Browne. When she is not performing or teaching music, she is very active in animal advocacy.