Nina Stern has carved a unique and astonishingly diverse career for herself as a world-class recorder player and clarinetist. A native New Yorker, Ms. Stern studied at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis in Basel, where she received a Soloist’s Degree. From Basel, she moved to Milan, where she accepted a teaching position at the Civica Scuola di Musica. Ms. Stern performs widely on recorders, chalumeaux, and historical clarinets. She has appeared as a soloist or principal player with orchestras such as The New York Philharmonic, American Classical Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque, Trinity Baroque Orchestra, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, La Scala Theatre Orchestra, Clarion Orchestra, I Solisti Veneti, Hesperion XX, Apollo’s Fire, and Tafelmusik. Her numerous festival and concert series appearances have included performances under leading conductors such as Loren Maazel, Kurt Masur, Christopher Hogwood, Trevor Pinnock, Claudio Scimone, Kent Tritle, Jane Glover, Bruno Weil, Ton Koopman, Andrew Parrot and Jordi Savall. She has recorded for Erato, Harmonia Mundi, Sony Classics, Newport Classics, Wildboar, Telarc, MSR Classics, and Smithsonian labels.
Nina Stern’s latest projects include performances and recordings of traditional music of Eastern Europe, Armenia, and the Middle East, as a soloist and with the ensembles Rose of the Compass and East of the River. She founded Rose of the Compass in 2010 with luminaries of New York’s world scene. The ensemble, which released its first CD in 2011, explores repertory from diverse traditions and creates a musical space unifying East and West. The ensemble has collaborated with Kent Tritle and the choir of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, presenting innovative programs such as "The Ornament of the World: Music of Multicultural Spain," "The Wingèd Lion: Venice and the Orient", "The Glory of Constantinople" and "The Four Quarters of Jerusalem," also released as an album on the Pro Organo label in 2015.
Ms. Stern was appointed to the faculty of Juilliard’s Historical Performance program in 2012 and has served on the faculties of the Mannes College of Music – where she directed the Historical Performance Program from 1989 to 1996 – the Civica Scuola di Musica in Milan, Oberlin Conservatory, and Massachusetts’ Five Colleges. Nina Stern is also hailed as an innovator in teaching school-age children to be fine young musicians. She is a founder of “S’Cool Sounds" a successful hands-on music education project in public school classrooms. The Washington Post applauded this program as a model in its “innovation in the classroom” series (11/9/03). For this important work Ms. Stern was awarded an Endicott Fellowship in 2003 and was honored in 2005 with the “Early Music Brings History Alive” Award, bestowed by Early Music America.
Nina Stern has consulted for Midori & Friends and for Carnegie Hall’s Weill Institute, helping them to develop and expand their recorder curriculum. She has shared her teaching methods with students and teachers throughout the U.S. and Europe, and has worked to establish recorder programs in Kenya, Burundi, and in several schools for Syrian refugee children in Jordan.