She is a violinist and concertmaster, often listed as Belinda Whitney, born in Philadelphia and undertaking her musical studies at Temple University and Juilliard School of Music. Later taking part in competitions she was a medal winner at the International Music Competition in Vienna and at the Carnegie Hall International Competition.
She was a member of the Concerto Soloists Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia in the 1980s and she performed as concertmaster with the North Carolina Symphony and the Savannah Symphony. She has also been a guest artist with L’Ensemble.
She went on to become a much sought after violinist in Broadway orchestras working often as concertmaster on productions that include Beauty and the Beast, Children and Art, City of Angels, Cyrano – The Musical, My Favourite Year and South Pacific. She has also appeared on cast recordings of Boys from Syracuse, Brownstone: The Musical, The Color Purple, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Fine and Dandy, Guys & Dolls, Jersey Boys, South Pacific, State Fair, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Victor/Victoria and Young Frankenstein: The New Mel Broks Musical and the ballet Tango Fatal.
In the film world she was a violinist in Malcolm X and the concertmaster on Marvin’s Room and performed on the scores of Baby Boy, The Chamber, Changing Lanes,.
She has also become an extremely successful studio musician who has worked with a huge array of acts and ensembles from many genres of music during her career to date including Kristin Chenoweth, Rosemary Clooney, Elvis Costello, Laura Nyro, Mandy Patinkin, John Pizzarelli, Portishead, Dawn Upshaw and BeBe Winans.
The albums she has appeared on are numerous and too many to mention, but some of them are Not That Kind by Anastacia, One Amazing Night by Burt Bacharach, Swingtime! by The Canadian Brass, MTV Unplugged by Mariah Carey, Paganini: After a Dream by Regina Carter, Classic Broadway by Judy Collins, Christmas Album by Roberta Flack, Celtic Minstrel by James Galway & The Chieftains, Unite by Kool & The Gang, Standard Time, Vol. 5: The Midnight Blues by Wynton Marsalis, Ricky Martin by Ricky Martin, Oops… I Did It Again by Britney Spears, Gloria! Gloria! by Benita Valente & the Philadelphia Singers & Concerto Soloists Chamber Orchestra of Chicago and Star Bright by Vanessa Williams.
Benita Valente recordings
RCA 6559-2-RC (Gloria! Gloria!)
Adeste Fidelis (John Francis Wade)
Concerto Soloists Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia
The Philadelphia Singers
Conductor – Michael Korn
Here she performs violin on “Summer Song”as part of A Concert to Benefit the Norfolk Music Shed Restoration…
- CD Liner Notes: Gloria! Gloria!