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Rachel Varga has been critically acclaimed for her "...rich, warm tone...", "...innate musicality..."; and her "...flawless technique...". The daughter of concert violinists Ruben Varga and Norma Jones Varga, Rachel began her musical studies at the age of three with her parents. She first performed in public at the age of four. At the age of eight she made her recital debut at Central Synagogue in New York in a joint recital with her father. At the age of ten, Miss Varga made her concerto debut with the North Jersey Symphony Orchestra playing the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto. She quickly followed this with performances of Sarasate's "Zigeunerweisen", Saint-Saens' "Havanaise" and "Introduction and Rondo Capricciosso" and the Paganini First Violin Concerto. In 1983, she made her debut at Carnegie Hall, again playing the Mendelssohn Concerto.
Miss Varga was a winner of the 1987 Artists International Competition, and made her recital debut the following season at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall. Since then, she has become one of the top competition prize winners from her country, receiving awards from many competitions including the Palm Beach International Invitational Competition, the Vianna da Motta International Competition, The Szigeti International Competition in Hungary, and the Washington International Competition.
In 1993, Rachel Varga was selected by a distinguished panel of judges to become the first woman to receive the prestigious Montgomery Symphony Orchestra Fellowship Award. She served as the resident soloist and concertmaster of the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra for the next two years, during which she continued to concertize internationally and was also awarded the Waldo Mayo Award for an Outstanding Young Violinist. In 1995, Rachel Varga won the First Prize and the Audience Prize in the XXII International Competition of Musical Performance in Vi¤a del Mar, Chile. Her subsequent performances at the International Music Festival in Frutillar, Chile caused the Chilean press to declare her the star of the festival. In a review of her performance of the Bruch "Scottish Fantasy", "El Mercurio" raved: "...The North American, Rachel Varga, an exceptional young violinist...left the audience suspended with the uniform beauty of her sound and her flawless technique...Without doubt a definitive example of virtuosity and instrumental mastery."
Miss Varga has played concerts and recitals in the United States, Europe, Japan, the Caribbean, and Latin America; with such orchestras as the Zagreb Symphony, La Orquesta Filarmonica de Jalisco, The Budapest Radio Symphony, La Orquesta Sinfonica de Chile, La Orquesta Sinfonica Del Estado De Mexico , La Orquesta Filarmonica de Bogota, and La Orquesta Sinfonica Nacional de Costa Rica. Her repertoire currently includes about thirty concertos and several complete recital programs. Her expressive performances and beautiful tone have inspired comparisons to such artists as Jascha Heifetz and Mischa Elman.
Her performance of the Sibelius Concerto was praised as "...masterful..." by Robert Sherman on a WQXR radio broadcast. Other critics have also been impressed. The Strad calls her a "...powerful player..." who gives an "...impassioned performance..."
The Montgomery Advertiser raved: "...[Miss Varga] captivated her near capacity audience throughout with her rich warm tone and musical understanding of very challenging material... an exceptionally fine performance, sensitive, and very well executed... She tossed off double, triple, and quadruple stops as if they were child's play. Bounding through the violin's range with consummate ease and accuracy, it was a tour de force..which showed rare mastery and musicianship..."
The Sheboygan Press says: "... It's hard to think of a more winning, charming, polished young artist..she played the familiar Sibelius concerto with rich warm tone and the control of the experienced performer she is."
La Razon in Bolivia says: "...[Varga] amazed us with her vigor, assurance, and unquestionable technique...sweetness and electrifying vigor..."
Rachel Varga holds the degree of Master of Music from the Manhattan School of Music. Always interested in teaching and developing young talent, Miss Varga has taught several international master classes, and currently works with many young students on a regular basis, teaching violin and chamber music. She is a recipient of two superior teaching awards from Queens College in New York.