Born in China, Song Yalin first studied cello at the age of seven, and was admitted to the affiliated primary school of Shanghai Conservatory of Music when he was nine. After graduating from the Royal Academy of Music in London with a master’s degree, he continued his musical journey at Southern Methodist University where he studied with Ko Iwasaki. His cello teachers also included Yu Mingqing, Mats Lidström, Hans Jørgen Jensen and Christopher Adkins.
Yalin has been recipient of numerous awards and prizes in China, England and the United States. He won Outstanding Performance at the 3rd China National Cello Competition, and first prizes at the May Mukle Cello Competition in London, the Concerto Competition at the Royal Academy of Music and the American Music Teacher Association Competition in Chicago. He received a British-China Trust Fund scholarship, and has also attended music festivals including the Tanglewood, the Music Academy of the West and the National Orchestra Institute.
Prior to joining the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, Yalin has worked with the Memphis Symphony and the San Antonio Symphony orchestras as Principal Cello, and with the Fortworth Symphony Orchestra as cellist.