Hannah Robbins is a cellist and viola da gambist currently working towards her Masters of Music at Indiana University where she is an Associate Instructor and student of Wendy Gillespie. Taking part in the IU Early Music Institute, Hannah is a full time member of the Concentus ensemble, under the direction of Nigel North, as well as performs in various ensembles throughout the Bloomington area. 

In the spring of 2011, Hannah graduated from the University of Michigan where she received a Bachelor of Music in cello performance. There she was a student of Richard Aaron and member of the University Symphony Orchestra and the University Baroque Orchestra. She also studied viola da gamba with Enid Sutherland and discovered her passion for early music. 

Hannah has been active throughout the country participating in numerous summer festivals and orchestras. During the summer of 2010, she attended the Oberlin Early music where she studied with Catharina Meints. In 2009, Hannah won a position to play in the National Repertory Orchestra performing nearly 30 concerts throughout Colorado in just a short eight weeks. She spent the previous three summers in Washington, D.C. as part of the National Symphony Orchestra Summer Music Institute where she was the recipient of the Levine award and placed 1st in the 2008 concerto competition, receiving the honor to perform on the concert hall stage at the Kennedy Center. 
Hannah has also participated in numerous international orchestra tours, performing concerts at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dublin's St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Lerwick, Whalsay, Korneuburg, Krems, Kindberg, Eger Cathedral, and the Liszt Academy. Her most recent tour was in June of 2007 in which she was awarded the opportunity to travel as the guest soloist with the Denver Young Artist Orchestra, performing throughout Argentina in Cordoba, La Plata, and Buenos Aires. 

Although much of Hannah’s life is centered around her musical studies, her other passion in life has been ice hockey. Skating for the first time at 11-years-old, Hannah quickly developed a love for the game and has been an active participant since. Shortly after arriving at University of Michigan, she decided to join the Women’s Hockey team where she spent four years between the pipes as goaltender developing her skills and creating friendships and memories that will last a life time.  Without a women's hockey program in Bloomington, Hannah played for the Indiana University Men’s D3 team in the 2011-2012 season.  She has recently discovered a love of coaching and currently working as the Bloomington Blades goalie coach and Bloomington parks and recreation skating instructor, as well as refereeing hockey games in her free time.

The Story of my Viol: 

In the spring of 2010 I received a phone call from a luthier in Ottawa named Dominik Zuchowitz. He had heard I was in the market for a bass viola da gamba and expressed interest in making one for me. I still remember the first time I spoke with Dominik. His kind personality and passion for his work was immediately apparent over the phone. Within two short months, he was hard at work; building the 7-string gamba I perform on today. 

 7/27/10 “Your instrument is underway. The body will be of some lovely quilted maple I got several years ago, and I have one set left. I'm sure you'll like it. The top will be of some old, very dry Engelmann spruce cut dead-standing at high altitude in the Canadian Rockies.” 

My new gamba arrived mid-October via a giant wooden crate. I anxiously unscrewed each of 20 screws securing the lid on having not a clue about the magnificent instrument I was about to uncover. My attention was immediately drawn to the scroll. Since I was born in the year of the dragon and figured it would bring good luck, I had asked him to carve one as the scroll, optimistic that it would best be suited for what I can only hope is a successful future reviving this amazing instrument. Having admitted to never having carved a dragon before, Dominik based his work off a picture I found online and with great success, created an absolutely magnificent scroll. My attention was drawn next to the beautiful flame patterned wood that was featured on the sides of the instrument. I contacted him immediately to thank him profusely and find out more about how he created such a treasure. 

 10/14/10 “The teeth are cattle bone, as is the upper nut. The material of the back and sides is southern Ontario soft maple. Many types of maple show this "quilted" figure under certain growing conditions, and I had bought a few big, attractive planks some years ago. I recently shipped a violone made of the same stuff to the Juilliard; it's pretty spectacular! I've always been fond of unusual wood for instruments!” 

I knew there was no way for me to properly thank him without a trip out to meet him in person, which I added immediately to my list of 2011 summer adventures. Unfortunately, Domink had been battling a rare form of cancer and suffered a relapse shortly after completing my instrument. He passed away peacefully at home on February 8th, 2011 after a 3-year battle.  I am devastated to never have had the opportunity to thank him in person but know his life work will live on through the wonderful music created by each of the beautiful instruments he built. 

As quoted from his website: 
"Dominik was happiest with a blade in his hand: at his bench creating a new instrument, at the lake rowing his hand-made sailing skiff around Hardwood Island at White Lake (Lanark Highlands), or in the kitchen planning a delicious meal to feed the masses. He did at least one, and often three N.Y. Times Crossword Puzzles daily, and with a pen (Thursday to Sunday); he was the first to admit to having a mind filled with otherwise useless trivia. Dom loved his dogs: his distinguished sledding team leaders - Wolfgang, Titan, and Spook, and his Sheltie companions, especially Jack. His one and only athletic award was winning the Sliver Bunnell Memorial Dog-Sled Race in 1975, a 75 mile course over the Dixville Notch in the White Mountains of New Hampshire in brutal winter conditions, despite the limitations of juvenile arthritis. He will be deeply missed by his life partner Barbara, his son Nikolas.”

<July 2018>

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Traditional: Folk Tune Medley
Abel: Prelude in D minor
Elgar: Concerto for Cello in E minor, Op. 85
Saint-Saëns: Concerto for Cello no 1 in A minor, Op. 33
Abel: Prelude in D minor WKO 207 (from Allegro of Sonata Two for unaccompanied viola da gamba)
Reina: Surge filia Sion (from Marsyae, et Apollini de musices principatu - Opus 4)
Cozzolani: Messa a 4
Marais: La Gamme en forme de petit opera

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