David Starobin (born September 27, 1951 in New York City) is an American classical guitarist, record producer, and film director. He is married to Rebecca Askew Starobin (married June 22, 1975), and is the father of Robert Joseph Starobin III (b. October 18, 1979), and Allegra Rose Starobin (b. February 21, 1987).
Starobin started playing the guitar at the age of seven, studying first with Manuel Gayol, then Albert Valdes Blain and at the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore) with Aaron Shearer. While at Peabody he became Shearer's assistant, directing Peabody's chamber music program for guitarists (1971-73). During this period Starobin worked closely with pianist Leon Fleisher, becoming a member of Fleisher's Theater Chamber Players of The John F. Kennedy Center (Washington D.C.).
David Starobin has toured in the USA as a recitalist, chamber player and orchestral soloist performing at festivals including Marlboro, Aspen, Santa Fe Chamber, and Tanglewood, and with orchestras and ensembles including the New York Philharmonic, Houston Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, and the Emerson and Guarneri String Quartets as well as the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Since 1978 he has made annual solo tours in Europe, performing at festivals and making radio and television broadcasts. Starobin is a member of the new music ensemble Speculum Musicae, with whom he has performed and recorded as guitarist and conductor. He also recorded and toured since 1969 with the baritone, Patrick Mason.
Starobin has chaired guitar departments at Brooklyn College, Bennington College, the North Carolina School of the Arts, the State University of New York at Purchase, and, from 1993 to 2004, the Manhattan School of Music. He remains on the faculty at Manhattan School of Music (2009). Starobin was the first guitarist to have been awarded Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Career Grant (1988); was honored by Peabody Conservatory with its "Distinguished Alumni Award" (1999); and was given with his wife, Becky Starobin(married, June 22, 1975), ASCAP's 'Deems Taylor Award' for their work with Bridge Records (2007).
Starobin's own guitar recordings, made mainly for Bridge Records, have presented first performances of dozens of new compositions, as well as a broad range of repertoire from the 19th and 20th century. In 1990 he made the first recording of the newly discovered Giulio Regondi (1822-1872) "10 Etudes", a work now regarded as a landmark in romantic-period guitar repertoire. In 2005 he was filmed (London) performing works of Sor and Giuliani on a rare 1923 Herman Hauser parlor guitar for a DVD released by Mel Bay, Inc. (St. Louis).
In 1981, Starobin and wife Becky, formed the record label Bridge Records, Inc., a company that has released more than 300 CDs and DVDs (May, 2009). Bridge Records has been nominated for twenty Grammy Awards and has received three - for Best Contemporary Composition for George Crumb's "Star-Child" (2001) (BRIDGE 9099 David Starobin, Producer), for Best Classical Vocal Recording for Lorraine Hunt Lieberson and Peter Serkin's performance of Peter Lieberson's "Rilke Songs" (BRIDGE 9178, David Starobin, Producer) (2007), and for Garrick Ohlsson's Beethoven Sonatas, Vol. 3 (2008) for Best Solo Instrumental Recording (BRIDGE 9207, Adam Abeshouse, Producer).
Starobin's major projects as record producer include Bridge's ongoing complete George Crumb Edition, begun in 1982 with a recording made by mezzo-soprano, Jan DeGaetani and pianist Gilbert Kalish (BDG 2002, LP). Bridge's Crumb recordings were all made in collaboration with the composer, who attended all the recording sessions, and also recorded for the series as pianist, percussionist and narrator. The Bridge Records Crumb series culminated in 2009 with the release of the film 'George Crumb, "Bad Dog!"' (2009), directed by Starobin. The film's premiere screening was presented in London by the BBC, as part of a festival devoted to the music of Crumb. Starobin has also worked closely with the piano virtuoso Vassily Primakov, producing recordings of concertos by Mozart, Chopin and Dvorak, and solo recordings of Tchaikovsky, Chopin, Schubert, and Schumann. In 2009 Starobin directed a film featuring Primakov performing works by Brahms, Chopin and Scriabin.
In 1995, Bridge Records, Inc. signed an agreement with The Library of Congress to co-produce the CD series: "Great Performances from the Library of Congress", featuring previously un-issued concert performances recorded in the LOC's Coolidge Auditorium (1937-present). Artists appearing on the first 24 volumes of the series include Nathan Milstein, George Szell, The Budapest String Quartet, Leontyne Price, Samuel Barber, Cecil Taylor, Leopold Stokowski, Jan DeGaetani, Aaron Copland, The Golden Gate Quartet, Josh White, John Barrows, Berl Senofsky, Gary Graffman, Dorothy Maynor, Artur Balsam, Henryk Szeryng, Buddy Collette, Mieczyslaw Horszowski, Marcel Grandjany, Gustave Langenus, and Zino Francescatti. The Bridge/LOC series has been noted for its re-mastering of the LOC's original materials, in restorations supervised by Adam Abeshouse and David Starobin. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.