American violinist Pamela Frank has established an outstanding international reputation across an unusually varied range of performing activity. The breadth of this accomplishment and her consistent high level of musicianship were recognized in 1999 with the Avery Fisher Prize, one of the highest honors given to American instrumentalists.
Frank has appeared with such orchestras as the Baltimore Symphony, the Berlin, New York and Los Angeles philharmonics, the National, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Vienna and Houston symphonies, Cleveland and Minnesota orchestras, Orchestre National de France, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and Orchestre de Paris. She has performed under many esteemed conductors including Daniel Barenboim, Christoph von Dohnányi, Christoph Eschenbach, Bernard Haitink, Seiji Ozawa, André Previn, Leonard Slatkin and, most regularly, Yuri Temirkanov and David Zinman.
In the recording studio, Frank has made two discs for London/Decca: the Dvorak Violin Concerto with the Czech Philharmonic and the Brahms Sonatas with Peter Serkin. She has also recorded the complete Mozart violin concertos with David Zinman and the Tonhalle Orchestra (Arte Nova), a Schubert album with Claude Frank (Arte Nova) and the Beethoven sonata cycle, also with Claude Frank (MusicMasters). She has recorded the Chopin Piano Trio with Emanuel Ax and Yo-Yo Ma, the “Trout” Quintet, and is featured on the soundtrack to the film “Immortal Beloved.”
While committed to the standard repertoire, Frank also has an affinity for contemporary music, often including works by today’s composers on her programs. In March 1998 she gave the world premiere of a new concerto by Ellen Taaffe Zwilich commissioned for her by Carnegie Hall and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s. She has also premiered and recorded two works by Aaron Jay Kernis. Frank is on the faculties of Curtis Institute of Music and the Peabody Conservatory. She also teaches and coaches annually at the Tanglewood, Aspen, Ravinia and Verbier Festivals as well as at several festivals in Europe.
Born in New York City, Frank began her violin studies at age 5 and was a recipient of the Avery Fisher Career Grant in 1988. She is married to Howard Nelson, a physical therapist, and they make their home in the New York area.