Kiev Morales - Violinist
My name is Kiev Morales. I am a professional modern/pop violinist and performer/entertainer for all kinds of events. I have been playing the violin since the age of 11 and began performing professionally at 15 years old. I am an LA based musician and a class of 2018 graduate of Venice High School. I currently am on a gap year to pursue my dream of being a full time performer. I have performed for special occasions places such as Thailand, Vietnam, Mexico, Hawaii, Las Vegas, Florida, and more! I utilize my skills of ’mirroring’ and ‘perfect pitch’ to learn all kinds of genres of music.
My inspiration came from seeing someone when I was six years old performing Hip-Hop music on a violin, something that I didn’t think was possible at the time, on Santa Monica’s famous Third Street Promenade. I was amazed and I wanted to recreate that.
I found out that the violin wasn’t easy at first. Given the discouragement of my elementary school teachers and also the fact that I was not finding motivation to practice, I quit for 5 years. I would gain the inspiration to pick it up again seeing as how far behind I was from my classmates and gaining the courage to speak up and ask for lessons to continue my classical studies to improve my techniques.
Most people don’t know that I am diagnosed with ADHD, a chronic condition including attention difficulty, hyperactivity, and impulsiveness. Given this, it was very hard for me to learn the way everyone else did both in music and school. I needed to adapt to my condition and teach myself in ways that no one else could, so I turned to YouTube. Being a visual and audio learner, this was one of the best decisions that I ever made in terms of physical practice. I could see what others were doing with the violin and I was like a sponge, adapting to different styles and combining what I was seeing into my own form. I still do this to this day. This also led to me deciding to teach myself the skill to learn music by ear, something that I thought you had to be “born” with.
The first song that I learned by ear without the aid of sheet music took me two months to piece together. It was two months of me sliding my fingers up and down the strings to find every single note that was being sung until finally I had the finished product. This was just the start however. The more songs I learned this way, the faster I became at it and now almost 9 years later, I can learn songs in 10 to 20 minutes.
Eventually I built up enough of a repertoire to be able to perform on Third Street Promenade where, ironically, I first saw my inspiration that started my musical journey all those years ago. I would go on to perform on the Santa Monica Pier and land residencies in places such as Santa Monica Place, Casablanca, City National Bank Plaza, El Paseo Southgate Mall, The Boulevard Mall in Las Vegas, and many more.
I am grateful to all of my friends, influences, and teachers who helped me mold into the violinist that I am today. From concert halls, to the big stages, I have done it all and I only look to expand my knowledge and experience of the music world. Thank you.