Marissa Benedict was born in San Francisco and raised in Marin County, where she started playing piano at age seven, violin at age nine, and trumpet at age 10, which she studied under Joe Alessi, Sr. She continued playing all three instruments until graduating from high school and moving to Los Angeles to attend USC, where she earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Trumpet Performance, studying with Boyde Hood. Marissa has now been a freelance trumpet player in Los Angeles for over 34 years.
She currently is principal trumpet for The Pasadena Symphony and POPS, acting principal for Long Beach Symphony and POPS, and principal trumpet for Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra. She plays regularly with the LA Opera, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Los Angeles Master Chorale, Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, and other Los Angeles area orchestras.
Marissa is one of the founding members of The Modern Brass Quintet, which performs throughout the Los Angeles area. And she can be heard on over 150 motion picture and television recordings, playing for such composers as John Williams, Michael Giacchino, John Debney, James Newton Howard, and James Horner to name a few. She can also be heard on the television soundtracks for Star Trek Voyager, Star Trek Deep Space Nine, Jag, Commander in Chief, the NBC sports theme, Galavant, and Agent Carter.
Along with her busy playing career, Marissa is on faculty at California State University, San Bernardino, Glendale Community College, and the Colburn School’s Community School of Performing Arts. She coaches brass groups at many local high schools and has her own private studio of over 20 students.
She resides in North Hollywood with her husband of over 30 years and their three grown children, who are all attending college.