Carrie Rehkopf Michel

Since 1990, Carrie Rehkopf Michel has been the violin professor at Central Washington University in idyllic Ellensburg, Washington. Living in a rural area, her particular interests in building new audiences and cultivating artistry in players of all levels have led her to incorporate elements of acting, choreography and narrative into her violin work. Called a ‘first-class musician’ by Sir Georg Solti, she toured North America for 24 years as first violinist of the Kairos Quartet.

Founder and Director of both the Icicle Creek Chamber Music Institute and the Kairos Chamber Music Lyceum, Ms. Rehkopf has also performed at the Tanglewood, Banff and Norfolk festivals, at the Interharmony Festival in Italy and Music & More SummerFest in Herzegovina. She has given concerto performances with the Everett, Olympia, Wenatchee, Yakima, Southwest Washington and Lake Sammamish Symphonies as well as several youth orchestras. She envisioned and led a ‘flash mob’ of string players in joining her during the cadenza of Mozart's G Major Concerto with the Everett Philharmonic.  Ms. Rehkopf gave the world premiere of Maria Newman's beautiful violin concerto, Lux Aeterna, which she recorded at Capitol Records. 

During the 2017-2018 season, she and her cellist husband John Michel performed Brahms’ Double Concerto for memory in Seattle, Olympia and Ellensburg, and also performed the last movement at the Kennedy Center.

Her former students play in many orchestras and receive awards as outstanding teachers in higher education, the public schools and private studios. Before her position in higher education, Ms. Rehkopf enjoyed performing great literature with various professional orchestras, and loved to snorkel during her time as Associate Principal Second of the Honolulu Symphony.

She received her degrees from the University of Michigan, studying with Camilla Wicks and Angel Reyes and studied further in London with David Takeno. As Kairos has expanded into a more collaborative chamber ensemble, she revels in juxtaposing classical music with other art forms and collaborates regularly with choreographer Shauna Goddard Barger from Los Angeles. The Michels enjoy reading chamber music with their three highly amusing sons.