Sendai International Music Competition

Profile

Profile


Rodney FRIEND (U.K.)

Jury Member, Violin Section

Rodney Friend is recognized internationally as one of the most outstanding English born violinists. As a soloist, chamber musician, concertmaster, director and teacher he has appeared worldwide with the greatest musicians of the last fifty years. He made his London debut playing Sibelius concerto with the Halle Orchestra and his American debut playing Britten concerto with the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Centre. He has performed extensively as concerto soloist with major orchestras in Europe, North and South America, Scandinavia and the Far East under such conductors as Haitink, Boulez, Bernstein, Barbirolli, Mehta, Leinsdorf, Solti, Giulini, Davis and Roszdestvensky. Amongst his many recordings, his performances with the London Philharmonic of the Britten and Bach concertos for EMI received the highest critical acclaim.

In 1991 he formed the Solomon Trio with whom he toured Europe extensively, playing at such venues as La Scala Milan and recording much of the great trio literature for Carlton Records. It is however as a Concertmaster where his experience and reputation is legendary. In 1964 he became the youngest ever leader of the London Philharmonic, working closely with Bernard Haitink, Barenboim, Solti and Giulini.
In 1975 he received the unique honour for a British player when he was invited by the New York Philharmonic to be their Concertmaster, playing concerts and recording worldwide with Bernstein, Boulez and Mehta. It is with these two orchestras that he recorded almost the entire orchestral repertoire.

On his return to London he became concertmaster of the BBC Symphony Orchestra with Roszdestvensky, also senior lecturer and consultant of violin at the Royal College of Music. He is presently Artistic Director of the Cambridge International String Academy and Professor of violin at the Royal Academy of Music London. His many students have achieved success in all areas of violin playing. He travels extensively as a teacher and also as a jury member for the international violin competitions.

In 2008 the first two volumes of his books The Orchestral Violinist were published by Boosey and Hawkes, and received universal acclaim as being the most important works so far produced for this discipline.

In 2015 he was conferred a Member of the British Empire by the Queen for services to music. He plays a Joseph Guarnerius violin dated 1696.