Going Against The Grain: Yut Chia

Yut - Photo

Yut Chia is a Colombian violinist of Chinese descent, who came to New York City at the age of three in pursuit of the American Dream. As a young child, he was inspired by classical music that he heard and had always wanted to play the violin. However, despite a lifelong interest in the violin, he did not have the opportunity to start playing till the age of 12.

Chia began his classical training and eventually attended Queens College with full scholarship, under mentorship from renowned professors including Daniel Philips (The Orion String Quartet). His hard work and talent paid off. Chia started to make a name for himself through playing in the subways. He gained recognition as an up and coming violinist to watch through numerous major media outlets including The New York Daily News, The New York Times and the front page of aol.com.

As leader and founder,  Chia was inspired to form Yut and the Hot Four because he wanted to entertain people and to reach new audiences.

“Music is about bringing people with emotions and making them interact. That’s what I try to do when I play. It’s all I’m in to.”

He also wanted to create new arrangements and fresh sounds by combining classical technique with a more contemporary tate.

Yut and the Hot Four is the premiered violin-centric music group of the New York Times. Finalists in Kollaboration 2015 and first place winners of CUNY’s Got Talent 2015, Yut and the Hot Four is a contemporary EDM music group with a constantly rotating roster of first class musicians based in NYC. Though the group typically consists of string players, Yut and the Hot Four has collaborated with various other instrumentalists, and vocalists, including beatboxers. Featured by various recording artists ranging from Usher to Cyndi Lauper, Yut and the Hot Four has had the opportunity to perform in many of New York City’s finest concert halls throughout the five boroughs. They also have a very active concertizing schedule for private performances and venues. Each of the rotating musicians has an intensive background in classical performance techniques, which allows us to come together as a cohesive group to form the backbone for any work we are performing.

Full name:
Yut-Kung Chia – “The one who enlightens the path of darkness.”

Bogota, Colombia

Current City:
New York City, NY

Half-Colombia, Half-Chinese

What does it mean to you to “Go Against The Grain?”

“To ‘Go Against The Grain’ means to work hard to pursue your dreams! It means don’t let anyone stop you or let you bring you down. Instead try your hardest at what you do, set a good example in your community, and never give up matter what anyone tells you.”

What made you decide to pursue a career in this industry?

“Playing the violin is always something I’ve wanted to do at a very early age. I’ve always loved music and as a young boy Ive always dreamed of playing the violin. I would always see violinists and orchestras play and it always really inspired me and brought about many emotions. When I finally had the chance to play the violin that inner fire I had inside of me really blew up and all I wanted to do is play violin for hours and hours and there is no such activity in life that fills me as much as performing. When I go on stage I get to be myself and let it all out. It is my outlet in life and I love it! Even though the stuff that happens backstage is very complicated, being on stage and playing for hundreds or thousands of people really makes up for everything and that’s why I decided to do it full time. There’s nothing quite like it.”

What have been some of the challenges you faced/lessons you learned as an Asian American in this field?

“I haven’t particularly had any challenges as an Asian American. I am lucky to live in NYC; a city that is basically a melting pot or salad bowl. Lots of many cultures and ethnicities living together as one. I guess in my field I don’t have people don’t really care about what I look or come from because people from all over come to hear my music and my act. I feel that if I was an actor or any other field it’d be different but I’m am sort of lucky that what I do is music as long as the music is nice and dope it doesn’t really matter where I’m from etc. when people hear my music they imagine different things in their minds such as their past or future or other things depending on that my music is portraying.”

What do you feel is your biggest accomplishment, and why?

“I don’t have one particular big accomplishment that pops out but I do have a couple that I stand out and am very proud of. I feel like my biggest accomplishments have been able to play at the worlds best venues such at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, etc. Opening up for Robert De Niro, Cyndi Lauper, Kevin Spacey, etc. most importantly I guess the one thing I am really proud of is starting out playing the violin in the streets and subways of New York by myself. I was basically a nobody but after a lot of years and effort and a lot of work I’ve been able to accomplish so many things at such a young age that many people can only dream of. I’m still working on that path from rags to riches but and still have a long way to go but I continue to push hard and not let anything stop me.”

What’s up next?

“Next up I have quite a few fashion shows such as Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, I have other beauty pageants, I’m composing EDM pieces and more covers, going to focus on getting my YouTube channel built. More celebrities I’ll be playing for and I’ll give you guys a hint of one of them. *We Found Love Right Where We Are :p*”

Quote to live by:

“Work Hard, Stay Strong, and Never Give Up!”

Sign (Eastern Animal Sign & Western Zodiac):

Rooster and Gemini – “I have two personalities one of stage and one off stage. On stage I am this person full of so much passion, emotion, fury, extrovert, etc. off stage I am this introvert quiet nice guy who keeps to himself. People always come up to me and say OMG Yut you are such a different person on stage compared to off stage persona. I guess that because when I’m on stage I actually get to be myself and release all the emotions I’m feeling through my music. I also when I’m on stage want people to feel what I’m going through and what I’ve been through in life thus I just let it all out.”

Passionate about:


Favorite food:

“Italian Food. No one in my family is Italian; I don’t even think I have any Italian friends haha. However, I really love all types of pastas and all types of Italian Cuisine!”

Can’t live without:

“My Violin”

I Go Against The Grain #beCAUSE:

“I’ve started from literally nothing with no support from anyone and soon after made something out of my life. In return I’ve given back a lot to my community by setting an example that one can become something in life if you stay strong, work hard, and never give up!”



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