Commended by The Strad for “brilliance of tone and charismatic delivery,” Scott Conklin regularly appears as a recitalist, soloist, chamber musician, orchestral player, and teaching clinician throughout the United States and abroad. He is associate professor of violin at the University of Iowa School of Music and a violin teacher at the Preucil School of Music. Conklin has performed as a soloist with numerous orchestras, including the Louisville, Nashville, and Berlin Symphony Orchestras. He is a recipient of the Iowa String Teachers Association Leopold LaFosse Studio Teacher of the Year Award and has been a featured artist/clinician at the conferences of the Music Teachers National Association and the Suzuki Association of the Americas. Conklin has also been a presenter at the American String Teachers Association Conference.
In addition to performing from the heart of the standard repertoire, Conklin is a champion of new music. On March 1, 2015, Albany Records released Pieces and Passages, a new album that features pianists Alan Huckleberry and Jason Sifford, contemporary compositions, and Conklin’s own visual artwork throughout the packaging. His prior Albany Records release Violinguistics: American Voices, an album of contemporary American compositions with Huckleberry, was “urgently recommended” by Fanfare Magazine and was also the recommended album in the June 2010 issue of The Strad, which complimented the performers for their “interpretative eloquence, extreme technical precision, and an infectious brio that makes the whole disc enjoyable.” American Record Guide said the album was “sure to please any fan of violin and piano who is looking for something new.” Conklin’s recording of A Tempered Wish for Solo Violin and Chamber Orchestra by Ching-chu Hu was released on the album Vive Concertante! He has also recorded works by Luke Dahn, Franco Donatoni, D. Martin Jenni, and Jeremy Dale Roberts. Conklin and Huckleberry performed on the Suzuki Association of the Americas album Celebrating Excellence 2009, which featured the Albers Trio, Cavani String Quartet, Rachel Barton Pine, and Orion Weiss among others. Ching-chu Hu wrote and dedicated The Hope Moment (2011) to Conklin along with a new violin concerto that will be premiered in 2015. Composer Joel Puckett wrote and dedicated the BMI award-winning composition Colloquial Threads for Violin and Piano (2003) to Conklin as well as a four-movement violin concerto called Southern Comforts for Solo Violin, Orchestral Winds, Bass, Piano, and Percussion (2008).
A devoted supporter of music education, Conklin was featured on the violin master class DVD, Sound Innovations for String Orchestra, directed by Bob Phillips, Peter Boonschaft and Robert Sheldon. As an orchestral musician, Conklin performed on the Chandos release Prokofiev: War and Peace with conductor Richard Hickcox, the Spoleto Festival Orchestra, and the Russian State Symphonic Cappella—an album listed in The Penguin Guide 1000 Greatest Classical Recordings. As a chamber musician, he performed in the Iowa City Piano Quartet with Hannah Holman, Rene Lecuona, and Elizabeth Oakes, and has also appeared on recital tours with pianists Alan Huckleberry and Uriel Tsachor. Conklin is a former faculty member of the University of Texas at Arlington, and he also taught on several occasions as a substitute violin professor at the University of Texas Butler School of Music. In the summer, Conklin teaches at the American Suzuki Institute, Lone Star Young Artist Program, and Sound Encounters. He holds the honorary distinction of being a “Kentucky Colonel,” a title given to him by Governor Wallace G. Wilkinson.
During his youth, Conklin was a student of Carol Dallinger, Violin Professor at the University of Evansville. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music where he studied chamber music with the Cavani String Quartet, Anne Epperson, Peter Salaff, and was a violin student of David Updegraff. Conklin also earned Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from The University of Michigan School of Music where he was a teaching assistant under string music educator Robert Culver; there he studied chamber music primarily with Andrew Jennings, Paul Kantor, and Martin Katz, and was a violin student of Paul Kantor.