Rachel Barton Pine
Rachel Barton Pine
She debuted with the Chicago String Ensemble at age 7, and with the Chicago Symphony under the baton of Erich Leinsdorf at age 10. Her principal teachers were Roland and Almita Vamos. Home schooling allowed her to practice 8 hours a day. At age 14 she was forced by circumstances to contribute significantly to her family's expenses by taking jobs playing at weddings and in orchestras.
Explaining how she managed, she says, "I put on a lot of makeup and pretended I was older than I was." She attained notable success in a number of violin competitions, for example in 1992 becoming the youngest (at age 17) and the first American gold medal winner at the Johann Sebastian Bach International Competition in Leipzig, Germany. She also earned 2nd prizes in the József Szigeti Violin Competition (1992) and the International Fritz Kreisler Competition (1992), as well as awards from the Montreal International Musical Competition (1991), the Paganini Competition (1993), and the Queen Elisabeth Music Competition (1993). After a 2-year hiatus to allow for recovery from her injuries and therapy, Pine resumed her career. Pine has appeared as a soloist with orchestras around the world under conductors such as Charles Dutoit, Zubin Mehta, Neeme Järvi, Marin Alsop, Semyon Bychkov, Plácido Domingo and José Serebrier. She has also appeared with Daniel Barenboim, Christoph Eschenbach and William Warfield.
Her festival appearances include Marlboro, Ravinia, Montreal, Salzburg, and Salzburg’s Mozartwoche at the invitation of Franz Welser-Möst. Her musical interests extend well beyond classical to baroque, folk, Celtic, rock and jazz. She regularly instructs at Mark O'Connor's annual summer fiddle camp, and in 2004 released a CD in collaboration with Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser. Pine performs chamber music as part of Trio Settecento with David Schrader and John Mark Rozendaal, and with the Jupiter Chamber Players. In September 2009, Cedille Records released Trio Settecento’s new album, A German Bouquet, a selection of German baroque era works with popular pieces by Bach and Buxtehude as well as rarely heard repertoire by artists including Johann Schop, Georg Muffat and Johann Georg Pisendel. Featuring Pine on baroque violin, Rozendaal on viola da gamba and ‘cello and Schrader on harpsichord and organ, A German Bouquet follows up the group’s 2007 album An Italian Sojourn.
The trio will continue to explore the character and complexion of Baroque music as it developed in various regions of Europe in future albums focusing on music from France and the British Isles. Her current principal instrument is the 1742 “ex-Soldat” violin of Guarneri del Gesu. For 17th and 18th century pieces she prefers to use an unaltered 1770 instrument of Nicolò Gagliano I. Her taste in rock runs to heavy metal, with AC/DC, Anthrax, Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Megadeth, Metallica, Motörhead, Pantera, Slayer and Van Halen being among her favorites. She has met and jammed with a number of these, and in 1997 released a heavy-metal-inspired CD. In Feb.
2009, she joined the thrash/doom metal band Earthen Grave, where she performs on a 6-string Viper electric violin. The band has shared the stage with such metal luminaries as Pentagram, Black Label Society, Mayhem and Nachtmystium. The group released an EP, Dismal Times. Doommantia proclaimed that Earthen Grave has "all the songwriting capabilities to make one of the best albums ever." and HellrideMusic.com said "If the doom gods are with us, this band will stay around and continue to produce the kind of unique, powerful and thoughtful music contained on Dismal Times." Pine credits her experience playing in a rock band with improving her emotional rapport with her audiences.
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