Karen Bentley Pollick, violinist
Karen Bentley Pollick is one of America’s leading contemporary violinists and violists. She received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for her 2010 Solo Violin and Alternating Currents concerts:“Rarely will a recital such as this engage the ear from beginning to end, yet each piece at Birmingham Museum of Art event had a unique style and temperament, reflecting Pollick’s keen sense for gleaning quality in experimental music and giving these scores their rightful due…Pollick not only extended that thread, she vitalized and emboldened it.” Michael Huebner, Birmingham News. Pollick performs a wide range of solo repertoire and styles on violin, viola, piano and Norwegian hardangerfele. A native of Palo Alto, California, she studied with Camilla Wicks in San Francisco and with Yuval Yaron, Josef Gingold and Rostislav Dubinsky at Indiana University where she received both Bachelors and Masters of Music Degrees in Violin Performance. Her discography includes recordings of original music Electric Diamond, Angel, Konzerto and Succubus and Ariel View, for which she has received three music awards from Just Plain Folks, including Best Instrumental Album and Best Song. On her own record label Ariel Ventures she has produced Dancing Suite to Suite, <amberwood>, Homage to Fiddlers, Bebop for Beagles, Estadio, Russian Soulscapes, and Peace Piece. She filmed Dan Tepfer’s Solo Blues for Violin and Piano in Shoal Creek, Alabama, performed with Paul Dresher’s Electro-Acoustic Ensemble, and recorded extensively with Russian pianist/composer Ivan Sokolov. Pollick continues her multimedia collaborations with Violin, Viola & Video Virtuosity.
While residing in Vilnius, Lithuania she debuted Resonances from Vilna with pianist Jascha Nemtsov in May 2014, Nothing is Forever with actor Aiste Ptakauske in December 2015, and premiered David A. Jaffe’s violin concerto How Did It Get So Late So Soon? with the Lithuanian National Opera & Ballet Theatre Orchestra at the Tytuvenai Festival with Maestro Robertas Servenikas in August 2016. Karen performs on a violin made by Jean Baptiste Vuillaume in 1860 and a viola made in 1987 by William Whedbee.
Karen received a Seed Money Grant for Disseminated Performances from New York Women Composers towards solo concerts with electronics in Seattle, Stanford University’s CCRMA, and SPECTRUMNYC in spring 2018. She is represented on two tracks of Dorothy Hindman’s “Tightly Wound”, released on Innova and winner of #1 Gold Medal in the Fall 2017 Global Music Awards.