Rachel Halvorson


Rachel Halvorson+

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First year with SO: 2019

Hometown: San Antonio, TX

Instrument: Rachel plays on a Mario Miralles viola on generous loan from the Maestro Foundation.

Bachelor of Music – Oberlin Conservatory of Music; Master of Music – Rice University, Shepherd School of Music

Rachel holds degrees from Oberlin Conservatory (BM), studying with Peter Slowik, and Rice University (MM), where she acted as Teaching Assistant to Ivo Van der Werff and coached chamber music for the Rice Preparatory Program. Rachel's love for orchestral music began at age 10, when she left a Harry Potter movie absolutely convinced that she had to play in an orchestra, and immediately took up viola lessons. Since then, Rachel has performed with orchestras such as the Cincinnati, Houston, San Antonio, Akron, Syracuse and New World symphonies, and Boston Symphony Orchestra in an opportunity through Tanglewood. During the summer season, she has joined Tanglewood, Spoleto Festival, National Repertory Orchestra, and Credo Festival on fellowships. Most recently, Rachel joined the Music in the Mountains festival in Durango, CO. Rachel Halvorson is thrilled to join the Sarasota Orchestra and the Sarasota String Quartet this season.

Rachel recently was awarded first prize at the American Viola Society's Excerpt Competition and Collegiate Solo Competition. She has performed in masterclasses for inspiring pedagogues including Heidi Castleman, Robert Vernon, Roberto Diaz, Paul Coletti, Helen Callus, Paul Silverthorn, and Cathy Basrak. As a chamber musician, Rachel has coached with such esteemed ensembles as the Juilliard, Ebene, Dover, Cavani, Calder, and Jupiter Quartets.  An advocate for contemporary classical music, Rachel has performed with numerous ensembles, including Hear & Now and KINETIC: The Conductorless Ensemble, a vibrant string chamber orchestra focusing on "showcasing diverse, under represented, and newly composed classical music through flexible chamber and orchestral formats". She is excited to join Sarasota's EnsembleNEWSRQ this season.

When she's not playing viola, Rachel enjoys hot yoga, hiking, swing dancing, talking her friends into letting her dog-sit, and creating delicious gluten-free foods. She loves teaching music at all levels, both one-on-one and in schools. Connecting with people in her community through music has always been important to Rachel.

Career Highlights:
A career highlight for Rachel is the particular joy she had in performing at Carnegie Hall and Seiji Ozawa Hall. She appreciates every opportunity that's allowed her to travel to new places and engage new people through music!


Written byHerald Tribune

 Literally gripping the arms of my seat, I was not the only one propelled on this rollercoaster of delightful music.  

Written byHerald Tribune

 Every section and soloist within the orchestra played their role with strength and beauty; every tree proud and tall. Tali served as an excellent guide leading the forces with assured confidence. The overall sound was lush and, yes, intense just where it needed to be.  

Written byHerald Tribune

 The Sarasota Orchestra was brimming with bubbling energy...  

Written byHerald Tribune

 A lifetime of musical moments, cinematic in scope, gave every section of the orchestra a leading role at one time or another. Chief among them was the virtuosic solo of concertmaster Daniel Jordan.  

Written byHerald Tribune

 It was a thrill ride resulting in an explosion of audience enthusiasm.  

Written byThe Observer

 Andrew Lane, the Orchestra’s Principal Pops Conductor, knows how to program a winning event and this concert had something for everyone. It also brought in a whole new audience that seemed dazzled by the performances.  

Written byThe Observer

 The Sarasota Orchestra played a program this past weekend filled with so much color, it was like visiting the Louvre.  

Written byHerald Tribune

 The performance... was exceptional, bringing new and stunning sonorities from a larger than usual Sarasota Orchestra under the dynamic leadership of Anu Tali.  

Annual Fund

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About Us

Our mission is to engage, educate, and enrich our community through high-quality, live musical experiences.

 709 N Tamiami Tr, Sarasota, FL 34236

 Box Office: 941.953.3434

 Administration: 941.953.4252


 Box Office Hours:
Our staff is here to help by phone or email Monday-Friday from 10am-4pm.
The office is currently closed to the public.

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