DR. ZOE KAI WAI LEI is a passionate performer known for her impressive technique and imaginative musical programming. Named among the “20 under 30, Class of 2021” by the Diapason Magazine for her achievements in organ, carillon, and harpsichord, Dr. Lei specializes in twentieth and twenty-first-century repertoire and is an advocate for new organ and carillon music, frequently premiering commissioned works, as well as the East Asian Music and transcriptions featured on her recent dissertation recitals.
Dr. Lei has performed extensively on both the organ and carillon in her original city of Hong Kong, in Canada, and in the United States, where she is currently based. In April of 2017, Dr. Lei gave her debut recital at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre where she was interviewed by Radio Television Hong Kong as a "New Music Star.” Dr. Lei continues to perform regularly, including at the Organix Festival in Canada, and has given over fifty carillon recitals on the Lurie and Burton Memorial Towers at the University over the past two years.
A recipient of numerous awards, including second prize at the 2021 Hong Kong Young Organist Competition (American Guild of Organists) and third prize at the 2022 Sursa Organ Competition, Dr. Lei was the exclusive recipient of the Rackham International Student Fellowship at the University of Michigan School of Music in 2022.
Additionally, Dr. Lei was the semi-finalist of the 2022 National Young Artists Competition in Organ Performance (American Guild of Organists) and the co-winner of the American Guild of Organists Commissioning Project (2021-2022).
Dr. Lei regularly collaborates with ensemble groups in the cities where she resides. While living in Hong Kong, she formed the IZR Organ Trio with the organists Ivan Leung and Ryan Chan in February of 2020. In Canada from 2017 to 2020, she worked as an organist at Toronto Bloor Street United Church and Toronto Chinese Baptist Church. In the United States from 2021-2022, she was the Music Director and Organist at St Luke’s Episcopal Church in Ypsilanti, Michigan, and the Assistant Organist and Carillonist at Kirk in the Hills Presbyterian Church in Bloomfield Township, Michigan.
In June of 2017, Dr. Lei completed her undergraduate studies at Hong Kong Baptist University in organ and music education. After studying with the renowned Hong Kong organist Kin Yu Wong, she completed her master’s degree in organ performance at the University of Toronto under Kevin Komisaruk. This year, Dr. Lei completed her doctoral studies in Sacred Music (Organ Performance) at the University of Michigan, where she studied the organ with Nicole Keller, James Kibbie, and Todd Wilson. Dr. Lei also studied the carillon with Tiffany Ng and is an Associate Carillonneur member of the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America. Additionally, Dr. Lei has received organ coaching from Peter Sykes, Paul Jacobs, and John Paul Farahat.
When not engaged in musical activities, Dr. Lei’s favorite pastimes are writing calligraphy and playing badminton.
SOLO ORGAN RECITAL
July 5, 2023, 7:30 PM
Methuen Memorial Hall
Featuring works by J.S. Bach, Franz Tunder, Maurice Ravel, and Sergei Prokofiev
SOLO ORGAN AND CARILLON RECITAL
July 9, 2023, 4:00 PM
Christ Church Cranbrook
Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
Featuring works by Ronald Barnes, Geert D'hollander, and Marco Enrico Bossi
SOLO CARILLON RECITAL
July 10, 2023, 7:00 PM
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Featuring works by Ronald Barnes, Geert D'hollander, and Florence Price
PIPES AT ONE
October 24, 2023, 1:00 PM
Trinity Church Wall Street
New York, New York