Jana Semaan started learning cello at the age of eight at the Lebanese National Higher Conservatory of Music with Prof. Sarkis Kochkarian. After graduating from high school, Jana moved to Berlin where she was granted a scholarship to pursue cello studies. One year later, she auditioned to the State University of Music and Performing Arts (HMDK) in Stuttgart. She graduated 2014 from HMDK with top grades (class of Elena Cheah and Joachim Hess). Meanwhile Jana was touring regularly as an orchestra and chamber musician under the baton of Daniel Barenboim and others. She participated in several international festivals in Europe, Asia, the Americas and Lebanon (BBC Proms, Salzburger Festspiele, Bayreuth Festival, Lucerne Festival etc.). In 2009, She was invited by the Teatro alla Scala Orchestra in Milan for a three-month project. In 2016, Jana received her Master’s degree in Early Music/Baroque Cello from the HMDK in Stuttgart with distinction (class of Jonathan Pešek). She was appointed board member and advisor at the early music university department. Jana participated in many master classes with renowned musicians such as Yo-Yo Ma, Lluis Claret, Conradin Brotbek, Jesper Christensen, Dame Emma Kirkby, Eric Mentzel, Malcolm Bilson among others, and is always active as a chamber musician through academies, festivals and regular ensembles. As a baroque cellist, living in Europe exposed her to big influences. Since 2017, Jana teaches music at several universities in Lebanon. In September 2018, she founded the Center for Early Music at the Antonine University-Lebanon, the first of its kind in the region, where also guest teachers from Germany visit regularly.
With her premiere recording project of the complete toccatas of Francesco Paolo Scipriani / Supriano (1678-1753) in 2019, she introduced herself as a solo baroque cellist to a large audience, while also pursuing the pedagogical approach of spreading this work to cello students and providing a historically informed performance practice of lesser-known compositions of the cello repertoire.
Since, she has become a recording artist at Redbooth Studios in Lebanon, with whom she also recorded and released Naji Hakim’s premiere ‘Aria’ for four cellos in 2021. Jana is currently a member of the Café International Baroque Orchestra in Germany, the Etihad Chamber Orchestra in Jordan and board member of the newly founded German-Lebanese Artists Society.