Pianist RENATE ROHLFING is rapidly garnering a name as one of her generation’s most versatile and accomplished collaborative pianists. Equally comfortable in instrumental and vocal music, Ms. Rohlfing has performed at some of the most prestigious festivals and venues throughout North America, Asia, and Europe, including the Ravinia Festival, Cité Universitaire Internationale de Paris, Musiekgebouw, Carnegie Hall, and the David Koch Theater at Lincoln Center, where she recently accompanied soprano Anna Netrebko in a gala performance. Also active as an orchestral pianist, vocal coach, and piano teacher, she retains an extensive private studio in New York City.
Ms. Rohlfing began her 2013/14 season at the Ravinia Festival, where she performed Britten’s “Phaedra” with members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the baton of James Conlon, while serving as resident pianist in the Steans Music Institute Program for Singers for the third consecutive year. She embarks on a recital tour with soprano Julia Bullock, winner of the Young Concert Artists competition, with concerts in Georgia, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and debut recitals at the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington and Merkin Hall in New York City. In its second season, her piano trio LONGLEASH performs concerts at the San Francisco Center for New Music, the Kunstuniversität Graz (Austria), and completes a residency at Ohio University. Other recital engagements throughout the season include concerts with soprano Sarah Wolfson in South Carolina, soprano Kathryn Guthrie in Pennsylvania, flutist Chelsea Knox throughout the north-east, and flutist Stephanie Kwak in New York. Ms. Rohlfing concludes her season at the Spoleto Festival USA, where she serves on the music staff and performs in chamber music concerts and as orchestral pianist in John Adams’ “El Nino.”
Ms. Rohlfing’s passion for vocal accompanying has led to numerous prestigious opportunities in this field. In 2013, she made her debut at the Cincinnati May Festival, performing in two recitals with soprano Janai Brugger (1st place winner in Operalia and Metropolitan Opera National Council competitions) and mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack (Los Angeles Opera, San Francisco Opera). She returns, in 2014, to the Ravinia Festival in Chicago, where she has served as a resident pianist in the Steans Music Insitute for the previous three years, performing in concerts and recitals under the festival’s auspices. In recent seasons, she was selected to be a Stern Fellow at Pepperdine’s “Songfest” festival in California and served as a pianist-in-residence for Marilyn Horne’s “The Song Continues…” series at Carnegie Hall. In high demand as a vocal accompanist, some of Ms. Rohlfing’s other recent concerts include various performances with baritone Timothy McDevitt, soprano Julia Bullock, and soprano Sarah Wolfson. She is on the accompanying staff for the Juilliard School’s Vocal Arts department, and was selected to play for the school’s annual Vocal Arts Honors Recital at Peter Jay Sharp Theater in 2010, in addition to performing in numerous other vocal recitals at Juilliard. As an operatic pianist and repetiteur, Ms. Rohlfing has served as Assistant Conductor for the Los Angeles Opera’s production of “La cenerentola”, conducted by Maestro Conlon, as well as garnering music staff assignments for Juilliard opera productions of “La finta giardiniera” by Mozart and the US premiere of Sir Peter Maxwell Davies’ “Kommilitonen”, rated by TimeOut New York as the #1 Classical Music event of 2011.
Equally familiar with instrumental repertoire, Ms. Rohlfing’s chamber music credits include appearances through the Fondation des États-Unis, Alliance Française, New World Symphony, Toronto Summer Music Festival, Methow Valley Arts, and numerous radio stations including WUOL, WFMT, and KHPR. Allan Kozinn of the New York Times hailed her interpretation of various works by Webern as “graceful yet variegated.” She is a founding member of LONGLEASH Trio, with recent and upcoming performances of new works and other repertoire in San Francisco, New York, and Austria. Internationally, she has participated at festivals in Canada, France, Spain and Austria. A strong advocate of contemporary music, she enjoyed the special privilege of attending the International Ensemble Modern Akademie in Schwaz, Austria, where she worked with composer Wolfgang Rihm.
Ms. Rohlfing is also a highly experienced and versatile orchestral pianist. She performed with the Cincinnati Symphony in Britten’s War Requiem at the Cincinnati May Festival, and in 2012, she was invited to join the New World Symphony Orchestra, performing both orchestral and chamber works at the orchestra’s home in Miami. Previously, she served as the Orchestral Piano Fellow for the Juilliard Orchestra, and participated in concerts including works by Shostakovich, Prokofiev, Bartok, Stravinsky, Adams, and Respighi, among others. She has had the privilege of playing under the baton of leading conductors including Alan Gilbert, James Conlon, Robert Spano, John Adams, and Jeffrey Milarsky, in venues that include Avery Fisher Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and Royal Albert Hall for a special performance at the London Proms.
Beyond performing, Renate Rohlfing is rapidly gaining recognition as a vocal coach for singers. Specializing in German, French, and Polish repertoire, her coaching studio comprises singers from the Houston Grand Opera, Opera Theater Saint Louis, the Metropolitan Opera, Los Angeles Opera, and many other leading companies.
Ms. Rohlfing began piano studies at the age of 4 with Professor Peter Coraggio in her native Honolulu, Hawaii. After winning the New Orleans International Concerto competition at the age of 15, she made her orchestral debut with the New Orleans Symphony performing Tchaikovsky’s Concerto No. 1. That same year, she toured Japan on a solo concert tour, with concerts in Fukuoka, Kagoshima, and Tokyo, among others. After winning the American Music Teacher’s Association First Prize at 17, she debuted at Carnegie Hall. Ms. Rohlfing was subsequently invited to study at the Manhattan School of Music as a scholarship student, where she obtained her Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance under the tutelage of Solomon Mikowsky and Daniel Epstein. Further studies led her to SUNY Stony Brook and the Juilliard School, where she received her Master of Music degree in Collaborative Piano, studying with Margo Garrett, Jonathan Feldman, JJ Penna, and Diane Richardson. She is the winner of numerous honors and awards, including the Presser Scholarship, the Sorel Foundation scholarship through New Triad for the Collaborative Arts, the William Petschek Scholarship, the Juilliard Alumni Scholarship, and the Avenir Foundation research grant. The latter included a residency at the Arnold Schoenberg Center in Vienna, where she worked closely with the composer’s manuscripts and researched Schoenbergian performance practice.