Harpist Dr. Rachel Brandwein is winner of the 2014 Mu Phi Epsilon International Solo Competition and has performed concerts nationally from 2014-2016 as a representative of Mu Phi Epsilon International Music Fraternity. Among her performance and composition accomplishments are first prizes and grants in numerous regional and national competitions sponsored by the American Harp Society, American String Teachers Association, and Mu Phi Epsilon.
In addition to solo, chamber, and orchestral appearances in Ireland, Taiwan, and China, Rachel performed a nine state, fifteen-concert tour with Trio Matisse (flute, cello, harp), sponsored by Allied Concert Services. She performs with various professional ensembles around the country, such as Vocal Essence, Conspirare, and the National Lutheran Choir, with whom she also records. Rachel has played with the Minnesota Orchestra under conductors Osmo Vänskä, Stanisław Skrowaczewski, Yan Pascal Tortelier, and Mark Wigglesworth. In 2016 she debuted in Hong Kong, and Chiayi, Taiwan, with flutist Linda Chatterton. They concertized on a tour of the Midwest in 2018, and will present several concerts on tour in Minnesota in 2021-22 that are funded by the Minnesota State Arts Board. Rachel toured the Midwest as a featured concerto soloist faculty member with the Luther College Symphony Orchestra in 2018 and performed another concerto with them in 2020. She performed as guest faculty on tour with the St. Olaf Band, also in 2020.
In 2017 and 2020 she was commissioned by Dr. Aaron David Miller and the House of Hope Presbyterian Church in St. Paul, MN to write a work for harp and organ. By invitation, Aaron and Rachel performed at the 2019 American Harp Society National Institute in North Carolina, and the program featured their original works for harp and organ duo. In 2015 and 2018 she was awarded commission grants by the American Harp Society to write a work for horn and harp, and harp ensemble. Her solos received the ARCH Awards from the American Harp Society Minnesota Chapter in 2013 and 2015. In 2014, by invitation, Rachel performed a full recital of her compositions at the American Harp Society National Conference in New Orleans. Rachel served on the committee of the American Harp Society Young Composer’s Program in 2017 during the National Institute. She co-presented a student original composition workshop and concert with composer Libby Larsen. In 2019 Rachel produced her second album of original harp solo and ensemble works, String Motifs, which can be purchased on CDBaby. Rachel earned degrees from Stony Brook University (DMA), The Juilliard School (MM), and University of Michigan (BM), and studied harp and French for one year in Paris and Lyon, France. Rachel is on faculty at St. Olaf College and Luther College, and has presented master classes throughout the United States and in Asia. Her goal as an educator is to help her students appreciate and fulfill their artistic potential with confidence, creativity, and courage. For more information, please visit: www.rachelbrandwein.com