Daniel RouslinI began studying violin at the age of six with a teacher who had emigrated from Odessa in the USSR. His nephew began violin around the same time, and the two of us became friends and often got together on Saturday afternoons to listen to records together. He would play something that he loved, but I didn't know, and I would do the same. In short, we reinforced each other's passion for music.
I majored in violin performance in both undergraduate school at the Oberlin Conservatory, and in graduate school at the University of Iowa, and took a two-year stint in between at the University of Chicago to perform contemporary music as a Rockefeller fellow. I also played with a number of orchestras in Chicago, including the American Ballet Theater, the Grant Park Symphony, and a "pickup" orchestra that played under Igor Stravinsky as part of his series of farewell concerts. My years in Chicago gave me the opportunity to compare the life of a free-lance musician with that of an academic. I discovered that there were too many interesting ways of being involved with music to limit myself strictly to playing it. My first long-term appointment was with the Delos String Quartet in which I served as first violinist from 1973 to 1986. The Delos was in residence at the University of Delaware, and since I was the only member of the ensemble with a doctorate, I got to teach Music Appreciation to approximately 230 students for fifteen semesters.
During the decade from 1981 to 1990, I was fortunate to do quite a bit of international touring, first with the Delos Quartet, which went on seven European tours, and later with Trio Northwest, the faculty trio at Willamette University, which toured South America for two months. Finally I was sent by the USIA to the middle east for six weeks as a violin soloist, and just barely got out of Iraq before the 1990 Gulf War.
My position at Willamette University has me wearing many hats - that of violin and viola professor, that of theory and literature teacher, that of chamber music coach, and that of conductor of the University Chamber Orchestra. After years of focusing on performance, I find that this diversified position suits who I am quite well. It brings me full circle back to those Saturday afternoons as a nine-year old, discovering and helping my students discover the magic that is music.
Professor Daniel Rouslin, Violin/Viola/Chamber Music, B.M., Oberlin College Conservatory of Music; Rockefeller Fellow, University of Chicago; D.M.A., University of Iowa. Formerly first violinist of the Delos String Quartet; has recorded on the Specturm label, as well as for Crystal Records, North Pacific Music, and the Smithsonian Collection. Member of Trio Oregon and Ensemble East West. Has performed throughout Europe, as well as in South America, the Middle East, Japan, China, and the United States.