Abby Swidler – Violin

Brooklyn, NY-based violinist, multi-instrumentalist, and composer, Abby Swidler, is a passionate collaborator across a multitude of artistic disciplines and musical contexts.

Abby has been concertmaster and principal of Palaver Strings, Discovery Ensemble, and Phoenix Ensemble and has performed and recorded with artists including Angel Olsen, Kishi Bashi, L’Rain, Lady Lamb, Shattered Glass, Mirah, Darlene Love, The California Guitar Trio and The Jessica Pavone String Ensemble.

Abby has performed on The Tonight Show, at SXSW, Winter JazzFest, Panama Jazz Festival, National Sawdust, Carnegie Hall, and Lincoln Center and is featured on over 40 studio albums.

As a composer, Abby spins sound into immersive dreamscapes that invite listeners to explore and reflect upon the natural world. Their music thoughtfully weaves together organic and electronic textures to create otherworldly sonic landscapes. Since 2017, Abby has been connecting with the natural world and exploring environmental themes in their music.

Current composition projects include: Arbor (2023), a piece for baroque violin and electronics, which explores the theme of deforestation in the United States, and the dualities of past & present, grief & hope, and nature & technology; and a film score for Holding Back the Tide, a Hybrid experimental documentary about oysters in NYC.  As a composer, Abby has written works for Palaver Strings, BBC Shortcuts, JACK Quartet, Dance Visions INC, O Miami Poetry Festival, and the Peabody Essex Museum.

Abby has been an artist in residence at the Banff Center for the Arts, the Turkey Land Cove Foundation for the Arts, The Panama Jazz Festival, and is a current participant in The JACK Quartet Workshops, The New Amsterdam Records Composers Lab, and Antenna Cloud Farm Experimental Institute Fellowship. Abby received a B.M. in Violin Performance from Eastman School of Music and an M.M. in Contemporary Improvisation from The New England Conservatory.

Growing up in Missoula, MT, Abby went to every SOR concert. Playing with SOR is particularly meaningful, because many of their most important mentors have played with the ensemble, and hearing the group growing up was one of the reasons Abby decided to become a professional musician.