Kristina Nilsson, Concertmaster

One of the Boston area’s busiest free-lancers, concertmaster and violinist Kristina Nilsson has played regularly in the first violin sections of the Boston Pops Esplanade and Boston Ballet orchestras for over twenty years. She has also appeared as soloist with both the Esplanade Orchestra (under John Williams) and the Boston Ballet (in Vaughan-Williams’ Lark Ascending), as well as with the National Symphony Orchestra, the Newton, Brookline, Brockton, and Quincy Symphony Orchestras, Boston Lawyers’ Orchestra, and the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, of which she is a co-founder. She has co-soloed for Pro Arte with both Joseph Silverstein (former Concertmaster of the Boston Symphony) and artistic advisor/violinist Arturo Delmoni, with whom she premiered a work by Leonard Ciampa for Two Violins and Orchestra.

Holding the position of Concertmaster with the Newton Symphony, Brockton Symphony, and the orchestras of Chorus Pro Musica, MIT Chorus, and Coro Allegro, she has also served in that capacity with Harvard Chamber Orchestra, Harvard Collegium and Harvard-Radcliffe Chorus, Wellesley Symphony, Lake George Opera, the orchestra of Festival Dei Due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy, and the Berkshire Music Festival Orchestra at Tanglewood, where as a fellow she received the Joseph Silverstein Prize for Excellence in Violin Playing, endowed by Joseph Gingold.

As a member of the American Schubert Institute String Quartet and of the Lavazza Chamber Ensemble, Ms. Nilsson has performed numerous chamber music works in the New England area including the Boston premiere of Schubert’s Conzertstucke for violin and orchestra with Pro Arte, sponsored by the American Schubert Institute.

With her two sisters, also professional violinists, Ms. Nilsson can be heard on an Angel CD featuring Garrison Keillor, entitled, Now it is Christmas Again. She served as concertmaster for Pro Arte and the Back Bay Chorale for recordings of Robert Kyr’s The Passion According to Four Evangelists (New Albion Records), John Knowles Paine’s St. Peter Oratorio (with Gunther Schuller), and works of Robert Starer (with Janos Starker as soloist).

With support from a special grant which Pro Arte received for community outreach, Ms. Nilsson has for several years coached chamber music at Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School; she also conducts violin sectionals at Greater Boston Youth Symphony and the Youth Orchestras of New England Conservatory, as part of their concert preparation.

As a volunteer with the national organization Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic, Ms. Nilsson reads textbooks onto tape in their Cambridge, MA, studios, and she also serves as a lay reader at St. Paul’s Church, Brookline.

Kristina Nilsson holds a B.A. summa cum laude from Connecticut College, an M.M. from New England Conservatory, and a J.D. cum laude from New England School of Law; she is an inactive member of the Massachusetts Bar. Her husband, Dean Rhodes, a CPA, was a principal with Ernst & Young accounting firm (recently retired); they have two adult daughters, Hillary and Erica.