I was only fifteen when I was accepted as a violin student at the Vienna Music Academy and studied with G.Pichler and later on T.Kakuska from the Alban Berg Quartett. The way they played had an enormous influence on me and still does up to this day. I got to know Kato Havas OBE at one of her Summer workshops and decided to continue my studies with her.
Kato had a Music Festival in the Summer when I was a student with her in Oxford where I gained invaluable experience playing solo. My performance of the Viotti Violin concerto in particular with the Festival Orchestra was much acclaimed by the critics. I finished my studies with a performers diploma with distinction. Master classes with S. Vegh and Ion Voicu in Salzburg Mozarteum followed, where I made great friends and learned a lot.
"Caroline Duffner studied the New Approach to Violin Playing with me for many years. I found her a very gifted and responsive pupil indeed. She was soloist in my International Festival and gave many excellent performances. I found her tone quality exceptionally moving."
I then spent many years being a ”citizen of the orchestra”. I had permanent positions in NPO South Africa and the Philharmonic Orchestra of Gran Canaria as a first violin and collaborated with Orchestras such as Rai Scarlatti Napoli, Orchestra Sinfonica San Remo, Radio Orchestra Munic, Volksoper , Tonkünstler and the ORF Vienna just to name a few. I found particularly inspiring working with conductors and players such as M. Rostropovich, P. Eötvös, Pierre Amoyal, Frank Peter Zimmermann, Nicholas Hooper (Harry Potter composer) and Simone Young. I have also been on tour with groups and orchestras in Europe, America, Japan and China.
These days I am a freelance musician based in Vienna. I divide my time between playing as soloist as well as chamber music and baroque playing. Recently I performed Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante with the violist Monica Cuneo.
Some orchestras occasionally call me in as guest leader and I had some ventures into contemporary music such as a tour I did recently with Ensemble Modern and Pierre Boulez.