MacArthur Fellows Program

MacArthur Fellows / Meet the Class of 2006

Regina Carter

Jazz Violinist

New York, New York

Age: 44 at time of award

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

High-resolution photos for download. Photos are owned by the MacArthur Foundation and licensed under a Creative Commons license: CC-BY. Credit: John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Right-click on a link below to save the file to your computer.

Regina Carter In the Media

"Violin Virtuoso Brings ‘Southern Comfort’ to Brooklyn" thumbnail

"Violin Virtuoso Brings ‘Southern Comfort’ to Brooklyn"

Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Regina Carter , 2006 MacArthur Fellow
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"Regina Carter Spends Day at Schreiber H.S." thumbnail

"Regina Carter Spends Day at Schreiber H.S."

The Island Now
Regina Carter , 2006 MacArthur Fellow
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"Regina Carter Offers New Perspectives on Jazz Tradition" thumbnail

"Regina Carter Offers New Perspectives on Jazz Tradition"

The Knoxville Mercury
Regina Carter , 2006 MacArthur Fellow
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"Grant Park Festival Announces Extensive Summer Lineup"

Chicago Sun-Times
Alisa Weilerstein, 2011 MacArthur Fellow
Marin Alsop , 2005 MacArthur Fellow
Regina Carter , 2006 MacArthur Fellow
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MacArthur Announces Performances, Discussion to Celebrate 35 Years of Iconic Fellowship Program thumbnail

MacArthur Announces Performances, Discussion to Celebrate 35 Years of Iconic Fellowship Program

Most of the events will be open to the public for free or at low cost. Video of many events will be made available online. Read More
"Regina Carter Finds the Jazz in Folk Music" thumbnail

"Regina Carter Finds the Jazz in Folk Music"

The Frederick News-Post
Regina Carter , 2006 MacArthur Fellow
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"Jazz Violinist Digs Into Her Past" thumbnail

"Jazz Violinist Digs Into Her Past"

San Jose Mercury News
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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