Rachel Lee Priday


A consistently exciting artist, renowned globally for her spectacular technique, sumptuous sound, deeply probing musicianship, and “irresistible panache” (Chicago Tribune), violinist RACHEL LEE PRIDAY has appeared as soloist with major international orchestras, among them the Chicago, Houston, National, Pacific, St. Louis and Seattle Symphony Orchestras, Boston Pops Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and Germany’s Staatskapelle Berlin. Her distinguished recital appearances have brought her to eminent venues, including Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ Mostly Mozart Festival, Chicago’s Ravinia Festival and Dame Myra Hess Memorial Series, Paris’s Musée du Louvre, Germany’s Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival and Switzerland’s Verbier Festival.

Passionately committed to new music and creating enriching community and global connections, Rachel Lee Priday’s wide-ranging repertoire and multidisciplinary collaborations reflect a deep fascination with literary and cultural narratives. Her work as soloist with the Asia / America New Music Institute promoted cultural exchange between Asia and the Americas, combining premiere performances with educational outreach in the US, China, and Vietnam. She has premiered and commissioned works by composers including Matthew Aucoin, Christopher Cerrone, Gabriella Smith, Timo Andres, Leilehua Lanzilotti, Cristina Spinei, Melia Watras, and Paul Wiancko. In 2022, she premiered a new Violin Concerto, “Kuyén,” written for her by Miguel Farías, which depicts the Moon in Mapuche mythology, with the UC Davis Symphony at the Mondavi Center.

Recent season highlights have included a duo recital with composer/pianist Timo Andres in Seattle and for the Phillips Collection, exploring the through-lines of American twentieth and twenty-first century violin and piano works, and a third tour of South Africa, where she appeared in recital and performed the José White Lafitte Concerto with the Johannesburg and Kwazulu-Natal Philharmonics. Upcoming and recent concerto engagements include the Portland Symphony, Springfield (MO) Symphony, Pensacola Symphony, Symphony San Jose, South Carolina Philharmonic, and Bangor Symphony.

Since making her orchestral debut at the Aspen Music Festival in 1997, Rachel has performed with numerous orchestras across the United States, including the Colorado Symphony, Alabama, Knoxville, Rockford, Annapolis, and New York Youth Symphonies. In Europe and in Asia, she has appeared at the Moritzburg Festival in Germany and with orchestras in Graz, Austria, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Korea, where she performed with the KBS Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic and Russian State Symphony Orchestra on tour. She has toured South Africa extensively, and has given recitals in the United Kingdom at the Universities of Birmingham and Cambridge.

Rachel Lee Priday began her violin studies at the age of four in Chicago, after she saw the sheep puppet Lamb Chop pretend to play the violin in “Lamb Chop’s Play-Along.” Shortly thereafter, she moved to New York City to study with the iconic pedagogue Dorothy DeLay at the Juilliard School. Her teachers and mentors include Itzhak Perlman, Catherine Cho, Won-Bin Yim, Robert Mann, and Miriam Fried. She holds a B.A. degree in English from Harvard University and an M.M. from the New England Conservatory. Since 2019, she serves on the faculty of University of Washington School of Music in Seattle as Assistant Professor of Violin.

Rachel Lee Priday has been profiled in The New Yorker, The Strad, Los Angeles Times and Family Circle. Her performances have been broadcast on major media outlets in the United States, Germany, Korea, South Africa and Brazil, including a televised concert in Rio de Janeiro, numerous appearances on Chicago’s WFMT and American Public Media’s “Performance Today.” She has also been featured on BBC Radio 3, the Disney Channel, “Fiddling for the Future” and “American Masters” on PBS, and the Grammy Awards.

She performs on a Giuseppe Guarneri violin (“filius Andreae”).