Mark Portolese is an active violinist and pianist in the Western Michigan area. He is Associate Concertmaster of the South Bend Symphony where he often serves as Acting Concertmaster and is also the first violinist in the SBSO String Quintet. He is also Associate Principal Second Violin of the West Michigan Symphony and a member of the Kalamazoo Symphony. As pianist, he was a member of Crescendo Trio and has served as a string accompanist at Grand Valley State University and Western Michigan University. He has accompanied students in such events as the All-State Solo-Ensemble Contest, the Stulberg Competition Master classes, the MTNA regional competition, the Walgreens Midwest Young Artists Concerto Competition and many others.
Mark teaches both instruments at the Crescendo Academy of Music where he maintains a private lesson studio of over 30 students, accompanies the student recitals and coaches various groups that participate in the chamber music program. Through Crescendo he also runs the Vicksburg String Program.
Mark Portolese received a Bachelor of Music in Orchestral Instrument Performance and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Illinois Wesleyan University where he graduated summa cum laude. There he studied violin with Vadim Mazo and piano with Lawrence Campbell. He also received a Masters in Music in Violin Performance and Chamber Music from the University of Michigan where he studied violin with Stephen Shipps and piano with Louis Nagel.