Dr. Rachel Grubb Friedman has spent her life loving music as a violinist, conductor, and teacher. Raised in a musical home, she began violin and piano at a young age and started conducting and organizing orchestras in high school. Her love of playing in orchestras and teaching life lessons through musical concepts led her to design a one-of-a-kind double major in Orchestral Conducting and Violin Performance in the University of Tennessee's prestigious College Scholars Program. During those undergraduate years, Rachel founded and directed the Oak Ridge Youth Symphony Orchestras and Summer Conservatory in Tennessee while also playing violin in the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra.
Her passion for youth orchestras and orchestral conducting led Rachel to complete her Masters Degree in Orchestral Conducting at Northwestern University in 2012. While in Chicago, she also directed the Merit School of Music's Conservatory Orchestra and freelanced in the Chicagoland area. In May of 2017, Rachel earned her PhD in Music Education and Orchestral Conducting from Florida State University under the mentorship of Dr. Alexander Jimenez and Dr. Clifford Madsen.
An avid adventurer, Rachel uses music as a great excuse to travel the world and has performed, learned, and taught at many beautiful summer festivals including the Aspen Music Festival and School in Colorado, the Järvi Festival in Estonia, the International Workshop for Conductors in Czech Republic, the Pierre Monteux School for Conductors in Maine, and the Missouri Symphony Orchestra as Assistant Conductor, Principal Second Violinist, and Conservatory Director from 2008-2016.
Her American conducting appearances include the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Missouri Symphony Orchestra, Astoria Music Society Orchestra, American Youth Philharmonic, Tallahassee Youth Orchestras, Tallahassee Ballet Orchestra, MAYS Orlando, and the Florida Symphony Youth Orchestras. She also guest conducted the Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic in the Czech Republic, the Estonian National Youth Orchestra, and the Parnu City Orchestra in Estonia.