Rachel Podger, Violin


‘Armed with a vast arsenal of bow strokes, Ms. Podger was able to chisel each line with meticulous deliberation and care.’

The New York Times

'There is probably no more inspirational musician working today than Podger.' 


Over the last two decades, Rachel Podger has established herself as a leading interpreter of the Baroque and Classical music periods. She holds many award-winning recordings to her name ranging from early seventeenth century music to Mozart and Haydn. She was educated in Germany and in England at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where she studied with David Takeno and Micaela Comberti.

After beginnings with The Palladian Ensemble, Florilegium, English Consort and The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Rachel has enjoyed countless collaborations as guest director and soloist with orchestras all over the world. Highlights include Arte dei Suonatori (Poland), The Academy of Ancient Music, Holland Baroque Society, the Handel and Haydn Society (USA), Tafelmusik (Toronto), Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Radio France International Festival and Camerata Bern (Switzerland). She has performed as a soloist at the Göttingen Handel Festival in Germany, the Izmir Festival in Turkey, King's College Chapel in Cambridge, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, King’s Place in London and Wigmore Hall. Rachel has also collaborated and toured extensively with fortepianist Gary Cooper, with whom she recorded the complete Mozart Sonatas.

Rachel records exclusively for Channel Classics and has won numerous awards including a Baroque Instrumental Gramophone Award for La Stravaganza (2003), the Diapason d’Or de l’année in the Baroque Ensemble category for her recording of the La Cetra Vivaldi concertos with Holland Baroque (2012), a BBC Music Magazine award in the instrumental category for Guardian Angel (2014), and multiple Diapasons d’Or. Her most recent release, the complete Vivaldi L’Estro Armonico concertos, was recorded with her own ensemble Brecon Baroque. This album was Record of the Month in March 2015 for both BBC Music and Gramophone Magazines, was awarded a Diapason d’Or and was shortlisted for a Gramophone Award. In Autumn 2015 celebrations for Rachel’s twenty-fifth disc release, Rosary Sonatas: Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber, will coincide with Channel Classics twenty-fifth anniversary.

Rachel is founder and Artistic Director of the Brecon Baroque Festival, an annual four-day event bringing top-flight period musicians to the Brecon Beacons. She is an honorary member of both the Royal Academy of Music, where she holds the Micaela Comberti Chair for Baroque Violin (founded in 2008), and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, where she holds the Jane Hodge Foundation International Chair in Baroque Violin. In October 2015 Rachel will be the first woman to be awarded the prestigious Royal Academy of Music Bach Prize.

Future engagements include international tours with the European Union Baroque Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and the Philharmonia Baroque (USA); performances with Jordi Savall, Camerata Bern and recitals, concerts and workshops at Berkeley Early Music Festival, University of Texas San Antonio, Juilliard and the Royal Academy of Music.

Rachel Podger is managed worldwide by Percius.

‘Inspirational originality elicits inspirational playing.’

BBC Music Magazine, Record of the Month