The Watercress String Trio members have been playing together since 2009, when they met at St. Olaf College. As members of the St. Olaf Orchestra, they toured across the United States and internationally in Spain and China. As freelance musicians, the members of the Watercress Trio have experience performing in all different types of musical venues, from concert halls across the country to local churches and coffee houses.
Violinist Anna Andrews received her Bachelor of Music in violin performance from St. Olaf College in 2010. Shortly after, she was accepted to master’s programs at the Boston Conservatory and the New England Conservatory. She decided to remain in Minneapolis, focusing her energies on her violin and viola students and building her unique freelance career in the Twin Cities. An energetic and passionate performer, Anna has played with various orchestras including the South Dakota Symphony, Bloomington Symphony Orchestra, Rochester Symphony Orchestra, Lirica Chamber Ensemble and the Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra. Her current orchestral post is as the principal second violin of the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra. Her freelance career has led her to perform with many groups and ensembles including Good Diction, the Jolly Groggers, Tommy Wesley & the Entourage, Theater for the Thirsty, Bloomington Civic Theater and the Minnesota Jewish Theater. Ray Shows, Mary Sorlie, Andrea Een, Kathy Wood and the Artaria String Quartet are among her primary teachers and influences. Anna lives in Minneapolis with her husband, Ben, and maintains a full private studio of energetic violin and viola students.
Ellen Hacker (violin & viola) is a freelance musician & educator in the Twin Cities Metro area. She performs regularly on violin & viola with theater companies Old Log Theatre, Artistry, Theatre301, Yellow Tree Theater, & Mixed Precipitation. She is also the newly appointed Music Director of the Cannon Valley Youth Orchestras in Northfield, MN. She teaches violin, viola & piano at Mount Calvary Academy of Music, St. Barnabus Center for the Arts, and at her home studio in South Minneapolis. A graduate of St. Olaf College, she studied violin, viola & piano and received a Bachelor of Music degree in Instrumental Music Education.
Hilary James (cello) is a freelance musician & teacher in the Twin Cities Metro area. She loves playing, improvising, composing, recording and arranging a wide range of music from classical to experimental sound art to punk rock. As a performer, she is the cellist and founding member of the Watercress Trio, principal cellist of the St. Andrew’s Chamber Orchestra, and spent 5 months playing in the Mediterranean with the Ulysses Trio. Hilary also plays in, arranges, and tours with local indie rock bands, We Are the Willows, A.M. Stryker, and Fiji-13. She teaches cello at The Music Lab and at her home studio. A graduate of St. Olaf College, she studied cello & piano and received a Bachelor of Music degree in Cello Performance.