“There were moments when the two soloists could not be told apart. It’s no small feat to match a player of Vengerov’s calibre in this way…”

Michael Dervan, Irish Times 2019

Regarded as one of Ireland’s most outstanding musicians, international award winning violinist and conductor Patrick Rafter has toured Europe, the Middle East, South America and Asia as soloist, recitalist and chamber musician. Internationally, Patrick has been the grand prize winner of multiple competitions including Valiant Violin Competition, Switzerland 2016 and the London Performing Arts Competition 2017.

During his career, Patrick has studied with and performed alongside some of the greatest performers in the world today, including Maxim Vengerov, Schlomo Mintz, Barry Douglas and John O’Conor. He has also worked with some of the most prominent composers of the world today, such as Arvo Part, and performed with some of the leading conductors including Semyon Bychkov, Marin Alsop, Sir Mark Elder and Gianedra Noseda. As a conductor, Patrick has directed the RTE Concert Orchestra in the finals of the RDS Feis Ceoil and has taken choral masterclasses with distinguished names such as Zoltan Pad and Volker Hempfling. In 2020, he became artistic director of Carlow Voices and in 2021, and was awarded the conducting fellow at U.C.D. Symphony Orchestra and Philharmonic Choir. He has performed as soloist with a host of the world’s leading orchestras and ensembles including Prague Philharmonia, Mannheim Soloists, RTE Symphony Orchestra, Kiev Soloists, Camerata Ireland. He has performed in some of the most prestigious concert halls such as National Concert Hall Ireland, Royal Albert Hall London, Berlin Konzerthaus and Concertgebouw Amsterdam and Seoul Arts Centre. He looks forward to debuts as conductor with leading international orchestras in 2022 including Prague Philharmonia, RTE Concert Orchestra, Moravian Philharmonic among others.

A protege of the legendary violinist, Maxim Vengerov, Patrick was born in 1991 into a musical family in Kilkenny, Ireland. He quickly became recognised as a prodigious talent winning over 50 national accolades. Patrick went on to receive a full scholarship to study at the Royal Irish Academy of Music (R.I.A.M.), studying with Eyal Kless and Fionnuala Hunt. In 2011, Patrick was awarded a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music (RAM) London, where he graduated with first class honours and was awarded multiple prizes throughout his studies. He was also selected as a member of the R.A.M. ‘s elite string ensemble ‘Sainsbury Royal Academy Soloists’ with whom he made his Wigmore Hall debut in January 2015. In October 2015, Patrick was personally invited to study under Maxim Vengerov at the International Menuhin Music Academy.

Upcoming performances include Czach Republic, Ireland, UK, Italy, Macedonia, France, Switzerland and also appearances with Prague Philharmonia, Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra, RTE Concert Orchestra, Camerata Ireland, London Mozart Players, Bad Nauheim Symphony Orchestra and Israel Camerata. Patrick has had multiple radio and television appearances, notably on BBC 1 and 2 (U.K.), Kanal 5 TV (Macedonia) , RAI (Italy), RTE (Ireland) and TG4 (Ireland), Kol Hamusica (Israel).

In Patrick’s hometown of Kilkenny, he was awarded ‘Kilkenny Person of the Year’ and was awarded the Coat of Arms of Kilkenny by the Mayor of Kilkenny City. Patrick is supported by Music Network’s Music Capital Scheme, funded by The Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. Music Network is funded by The Arts Council. He performs on a Jean Baptiste Vuillaume 1842 Violin and a Eugene Sartory violin bow.

Watch Patrick Rafter in performance with Maxim Vengerov at the National Concert Hall, Dublin.

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