MacArthur Fellows Program

MacArthur Fellows / Meet the Class of 2006

Regina Carter

Jazz Violinist

New York, NY

Age: 44

Published September 1, 2006

Regina Carter is a master of improvisational jazz violin. Though her work draws upon a wide range of musical influences — including Motown, Afro-Cuban, swing, bebop, folk and world music — she has crafted a signature voice and style. In jazz, bowed string instruments such as the violin are not traditionally featured in the solo role; Carter’s performances highlight the often overlooked potential of the jazz violin for its lyric, melodic, and percussive potential. Her early training as a classical musician is reflected in the fluidity, grace, and balance of her performance.  Carter’s repertoire retains a firm connection with the familiar while venturing in new, unexpected directions. On recordings such as Motor City Moments (2000), where she overlays swing with a soulful sound, and Freefall (2001), a collaboration with jazz legend Kenny Barron, Carter taps into a broad musical vocabulary to weave new sound tapestries. In live performances with jazz veterans and in ensembles, she captivates her audience with the passion and spirit of adventure intrinsic to her approach to music. Through artistry with an instrument that has been defined predominantly by the classical tradition, Carter is pioneering new possibilities for the violin and for jazz.

Regina Carter studied violin performance at the New England Conservatory of Music and received a B.A. (1985) in music from Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. Her additional solo recordings include Regina Carter (1995), Something for Grace (1997), Rhythms of the Heart (1999), Paganini: After a Dream (2002), and I’ll Be Seeing You: A Sentimental Journey (2006). Carter has performed at venues throughout the United States and Europe, including Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and Teatro Carlo Felice, Genoa, Italy.

Photos

Hi-res photos for download. Photos licensed under a Creative Commons license. Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Right-click on the links below to save the file to your computer.

Regina Carter In the Media

"Regina Carter's Jazz Genealogy" thumbnail

"Regina Carter's Jazz Genealogy"

NPR
Regina Carter , 2006 MacArthur Fellow
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"Two Intrepid Explorers"

The Wall Street Journal
Vijay Iyer, 2013 MacArthur Fellow
Regina Carter , 2006 MacArthur Fellow
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About the Fellows Program

The MacArthur Fellows Program awards unrestricted fellowships to talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction. Learn More

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