Rachel C. Walker writes poetic, timbrally sensitive works drawing from her ongoing immersion in and research on Chinese folk music, musical time, and language. Her pieces have been heard across the US, China, Sweden, and Australia, with major performances and commissions from the Tianjin Symphony Orchestra (天津交响乐团), the Chinese Bamboo Flute Orchestra (中国竹笛乐团), NANOWorks Opera, Svensk Musikvår, percussionist Colleen Phelps, the Ava and Cincinnatus string quartets, and pipa virtuoso Xia YuYan (夏雨言).
As the recipient of multiple grants to China and Taiwan, she has studied and written about traditional and contemporary music, while simultaneously composing dynamic new works for Chinese and Western instruments. Most recently, she has presented guest lectures at Harvard University (2016 Perspectives on Chinese Contemporary Music Conference), Australian National University (2017 Women in the Creative Arts Conference), and the China Conservatory. As the Co-Founder and Co-Artistic Director of Cincinnati Soundbox, she curates concerts blending the new music scene in Cincinnati with those of other cities around the United States.
Rachel studied at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and the China Conservatory of Music (中国音乐学院) with Gao Weijie (高为杰), Joel Hoffman, Allen Otte, Douglas Knehans, and John McDonald. She is a 2018 Schwarzman Scholar at Tsinghua University in Beijing.
Photo by Jackie Stevens