violin

It was 100 years ago this week that Russian violinist Jascha Heifetz made his American debut at New York's Carnegie Hall in 1917. Considered by many to be one of the greatest violinists in history, he was just 16 years old at the time. NPR's Rachel Martin spoke with commentator Miles Hoffman about that appearance and the career that followed.

Nathan Cone / TPR

At only two decades old, violinist Simone Porter has been described by the LA Times as being “on the cusp of a major career.” The audience at San Antonio’s Laurel Heights United Methodist Church earlier this year on January 31 witnessed another step on the way as Porter gave a recital for the Tuesday Musical Club featuring Mozart, Janáček, and a mesmerizing version of Arvo Pärt’s “Fratres.”

courtesy Mark Wood

Violinist Mark Wood has the classic music pedigree, but in his upcoming to the Alamo City, don't expect to see him in a tuxedo. 

"My three brothers and I were the first all-brother string quartet, so I grew up on classical music," he says.

Then his parents bought him the Beatles' Sgt. Peppers for Christmas.

"When I heard the Beatles and Led Zeppelin, that changed my entire life," Wood shares.

For professional musicians, the instrument on which they play is more than just a tool of the trade. It can also be a muse, a partner and a voice.

Min Kym started playing the violin at age 6 and won her first competition at 11. Now, the former child prodigy is the author of a new book: Gone: A Girl, A Violin, A Life Unstrung, in which she shares her story of finding her perfect partner — only to have it stolen away.

A 23-year-old, Russian-born violinist named Artem Kolesov is capturing international attention after posting a YouTube video in which he comes out as gay.

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