Martha Caplin has been a member of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra since 1982 and has participated on its Board of Directors. As a frequent concertmaster, Ms. Caplin has performed as soloist and has led the conductorless group in many Deutsche Grammophon recordings including numerous Haydn Symphonies, Mozart’s German Dances, Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht, and their Copland recording, which was nominated for a Grammy Award.
Other more recent recordings in which Ms. Caplin played an integral role as concertmaster are Ravel’s Le Tombeau de Couperin, Tchaikovsky’s Souvenir de Florence, and Bassoon Brasileiro featuring Frank Morelli. Of particular interest is the collaboration of Orpheus (Ms. Caplin as concertmaster) with Herbie Hancock (Gershwin’s World on the Verve label). Ms. Caplin was also acting concertmaster for the recording with Branford Marsalis (Creation on the Sony Classical label) and Orpheus.
Ms. Caplin gave the world premiere of Susan Botti’s Within Darkness. Performed at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center, this work was commissioned by Orpheus and dedicated to Ms. Caplin by the composer.
Recognizing the importance of educating and teaching young people, Ms. Caplin participates in the Orpheus educational program. As part of the program she has given master classes at UCLA and U. of Maryland and has worked with the chamber orchestras at the Juilliard and Manhattan Schools. She was also invited to work with the young musicians of the New World Symphony.
Ms. Caplin offers her Creating Harmony workshops to the professional and amateur musical community. The workshops address strategies in practice, performance, and communication skills as well as in the art of chamber music playing.
Chamber music has been an essential focus in Ms. Caplin’s career. She was a founding member and first violinist of the Primavera String Quartet which won the Naumburg Award for Chamber Music. She was the violinist of the Amabile Piano Quartet and the concertmaster of the Atlantic Sinfonietta in New York. She recorded the premiere performance of Jongen’s Concert a Cinq for Koch International Classics under the auspices of the Atlantic Sinfonietta.
Ms. Caplin received her Bachelor of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music where she studied with Donald Weilerstein and David Cerone, and her Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School where she studied with Joseph Fuchs.
With increasing interest over the years in helping others, Ms. Caplin has become a licensed social worker. In this recent endeavor Ms. Caplin is beginning her work with conservatory students, amateur musicians, and professionals in a supportive role both emotionally and musically. While performing music continues to be a passionate part of Ms. Caplin’s life, integrating healing and growth has become an exciting and vital component in her work as a musician.
In 2006 the Journal of The Violin Society Of America published Ms. Caplin’s article called Creating Strategies: Preparing For Performance. It describes concrete ways to prepare for performance integrating awareness of thoughts, the senses, emotions, and imagination in a focused and mindful way.