Rachel Barton-Pine
Click the Arrow One Time to watch a video of Violinist Rachel Barton-Pine Playing  Variatons on a Song We All Know! How Long Before You Recognize It?  I especially like the section from 2:47 - 3:35!  Be sure to watch the video at the bottom of the page as well!
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Intensely proud of her native Chicago, Rachel Barton-Pine started playing the violin at age 3, inspired by a performance at her church. She was considered a prodigy. She debuted with the Chicago String Ensemble at age 7, and with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra when she was just 10. 

Although Rachel never studied at a conservatory, the music education she received playing with the education arm of the Chicago Symphony, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago.  So Rachel was receiving a graduate level music education when she was still in junior high school! 
At the right are some samples of some of the recordings that Rachel has made. Click the arrow to hear some of the most beautiful violin playing I have ever heard. Her recording of Bruch's Scottish Fantasy is incredible, and the excerpt from her recording of the first movement of the Sonata in G major, HWV358 grabs me every time I hear it! Great motivation to practice, for me at least! It's the first of her CD's that I bought, and I still listen to it regularly.
In addition to her many recordings, her work with major symphony orchestras around the world, and her innovative work to promote the works of African-American classical composers, and her work to help support young musicians through the Rachel Elizabeth Barton Foundation, Rachel is devoted to helping young players one-on-one.  She is a regular participant at the Mark O'Connor Fiddle camps, and provides programs to public schools.

And by the way, kids.  Rachel is a big fan of rock n roll!  AC/DC, Metallica and Rush are all right there on her MP3 player! 

Besides being a wonderful violinist and an inspiration...for many reasons...Rachel provided one of the most fun interviews I have ever conducted. 
Watch This Video Very carefully at the 38 second mark! You don't see this very often!

The reference to Paganini concerns an incident where one by one Paganini's E, then A, then D strings broke.  Paganini continued the performance with only his G String intact!