Susie Park | violin
Hailed as "prodigiously talented" (Washington Post) and praised for her "freedom, mastery and fantasy" (La Libre, Belgium), Sydney native Susie Park first picked up a violin at age three, made her solo debut at five, and, by 15, had performed with every major orchestra in her country. Susie has grown into a musician distinguished by unusual passion and versatility, and today performs internationally as an orchestral, chamber, and solo artist.
Susie's international career was launched at age 16, when she took first place in the Yehudi Menuhin International Competition in France. This led to performances and re-engagements throughout the US, Europe, and her native Australia, where highlights included performances for crowds of over 135,000. Susie went on to receive additional top honors at the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis and the Wieniawski Competition in Poland.
Susie has since concertized around the world, soloing and touring with European orchestras including the Vienna Symphony, Orchestre National de Lille, and the Royal Philharmonic; American orchestras including the Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Indianapolis Symphonies; Korea's KBS Orchestra; Orchestra Wellington in New Zealand; and all major symphony orchestras in Australia. Working with conductors including Simon Rattle, Hans Vonk, Alan Gilbert, Fabio Luisi and Yehudi Menuhin, Susie has been heard in venues ranging from New York’s Carnegie and Alice Tully Halls, Boston's Symphony Hall, Chicago's Millennium Park, Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, Washington's Smithsonian Institute, Vienna's Musikverein, Cologne's Philharmonie, Düsseldorf's Tonhalle, and Sydney's Opera House.
Susie was formerly the violinist of the Eroica Trio from 2006 to 2012, with which she recorded the ensemble’s eighth CD, an all-American disc nominated for a Grammy, and toured internationally. She was also a member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center Two, collaborating with Wu Han, Gary Hoffman and Ida Kavafian. For three consecutive summers she was in residence at the Marlboro Music Festival, and she has been seen on numerous tours with Musicians from Marlboro. Susie has performed chamber music with members of the Guarneri, Juilliard, Emerson, and Cleveland Quartets, as well as Kim Kashkashian, Pamela Frank, Jason Vieaux, Cho-Liang Lin, and Jaime Laredo. Among her festival engagements have been performances at Music from Angel Fire, the Caramoor, Skaneateles, Aspen, Ravinia, Bowdoin and Salt Bay festivals in the US; Open Chamber Music at Prussia Cove in England; Bermuda Festival; the Mozarteum Sommerakademie in Austria; and Keshet Eilon in Israel.
Susie was recently appointed first associate concertmaster of the Minnesota Orchestra, and can be seen this season both leading and soloing with the ensemble. Susie is also a founding member of ECCO, the East Coast Chamber Orchestra, a conductorless chamber orchestra based upon democratic principles, whose focus is to be purely on music-making and comprising some of the most talented young chamber musicians, soloists and principal string players in major American orchestras. Translating this diversity of experience and virtuosity into a unified ensemble approach, ECCO combines the strength and power of an orchestral ensemble with the personal, intimate nature of chamber music. In 2012, ECCO released a recording of fresh takes on some of the most popular and compelling music from three different centuries. The virtuosity and spirit of the music-making soar on this self-titled debut album of beloved works by Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich and Geminiani, released on the eOne label.
Other recent highlights include judging the Michael Hill international violin competition in New Zealand; serving on the faculty of the Bowdoin International Music Festival; touring her home country as guest first violinist of the Australian String Quartet, which prompted the The Australian to publish a review headlined "Australian String Quartet proof Susie Park's one we let get away;" and touring India with the Australian World Orchestra under the baton of Zubin Mehta.
Susie's diverse musical interests have also led to collaborations with artists such as trumpeter Chris Botti, which whom she performed 41 consecutive shows at the Blue Note jazz club in New York.
Susie holds degrees from the Curtis Institute and the New England Conservatory; her principal teachers include Jaime Laredo, Ida Kavafian, Donald Weilerstein, Miriam Fried, Shi-Xiang (Peter) Zhang, and Christopher Kimber.
She performs on a J.B. Guadagnini violin made in 1740, once featured in a documentary of which Susie herself was a subject.
Susie enjoys knitting, garment design and other creative arts.