Violinist Dr. Lee Murray Wilkins, born in Anchorage, Alaska, returns to Anchorage from Rochester, New York where he held the position of Senior Instructor of Violin and Associate Professor of Violin and String Pedagogy at the Eastman School of Music and performed with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra as violinist and soloist.
Dr. Wilkins' performance career has spanned the globe as a recitalist, soloist, chamber musician and educator.He has served as Concertmaster of many of New York City's finest orchestras.Wilkins' solo performances have been described by the New York Times as "magical" and "elevated to a level of enchantment."He is the recipient of the Eastman School of Music's Jack L. Frank Award for Excellence in Teaching.His former teachers include Ivan Galamian, Dorothy DeLay and Josef Gingold.
A versatile and multi-genre performer, Wilkins has performed for such diverse events as the 350th Anniversary of Harvard University, the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, Korea, the Montreal Comedy Festival's "Juste Pour Rire", Garrison Keillor's "A Prairie Home Companion" and the PBS Film "Bach to the Future".He has even been spotted performing as soloist with several orchestras on the Musical Saw, Stroh (trumpet) violin and a fishing pole!Wilkins is the creator of "Phil'har-har'monic!" a witty and comical venture into the rarified world of the Symphony Orchestra.
As an educator, Dr. Wilkins has been a full-time Professor of Music at Mercyhurst College, Allegheny College and The Eastman School of Music.He holds a Bachelor and Master of Music Degrees from Indiana University-Bloomington and a Doctorate from SUNY-Stony Brook.
As a composer, Wilkins' full-length comic Ballet, "The Little Mermaid" has been performed by three different Ballet companies since 1993.His most recent work, "The American 1812 Overture" was premiered by the Anchorage Civic Orchestra. National performances are scheduled for 2012.
As a conductor, he has conducted orchestras around the country including the Erie Philharmonic, the Chautauqua Chamber Orchestra, the Fredonia Chamber Players, the Anchorage Festival of Music Orchestra, the Scranton Bach Festival orchestra, the Western State College orchestra, the Allegheny Symphony, the Mercyhurst College Symphony and Ballet orchestra, the Chautauqua Regional Youth Orchestra, the Jamestown Civic Orchestra and the Alaska, New York and Pennsylvania All-State High School Orchestra Festivals.
Dr. Wilkins performs on a 1771 Ferdinand Gagliano violin made in Naples, Italy.