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Violinist Odin Rathnam returns to midstate

Written by Cary Burkett, Arts & Culture Desk and WITF Host | Aug 10, 2016 12:54 PM


Odin teaching.jpg

The former concertmaster of the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra for over 20 years, violinist Odin Rathnam, has returned to make his home once again in Central PA.

After a very public dispute with the orchestra in 2012, Rathnam and the HSO parted ways. He continued playing as soloist with other orchestras and taught private lessons.

Then, in 2014, after a divorce, Rathnam left the area entirely. He says that at the time he felt the need of a "reset button" in his life, and sought a kind of "Walden Woods" experience by moving into a cabin in the Poconos.

There he continued to teach by internet, but had no live students for a full year. He also continued to play violin dates.

He says the imposed isolation gave him lots of time to practice his playing and to reflect on his next step. Moving back to his native New York City seemed logical, especially with the opportunities available for performing.

But Rathnam found his life the city in its way just as isolated as his life in the cabin. And he missed his children, who still reside in Central PA.

He says he thinks that "somewhere, in those 21 years I lived there, I fully assimilated and became a South Central Pennsylvanian."

Rathnam has returned to the area with the desire to make teaching a large part of the next chapter of his life. He hopes to build a studio for young violin students from beginners to advanced. Interested students can find out more information by calling 717-379-1568.

Odin Rathnam will be performing as well as teaching.  He has performance dates in the area with the Hershey Symphony in September, and will be playing Vivaldi's Four Seasons with the York Symphony Orchestra in October. 

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