"Evident Flair and Concentration"
the strad, Feb 2012
Estonian violinist Mari Poll has performed as a soloist and chamber musician across Europe and America at venues including the Philharmonie de Paris, Wigmore Hall, Cadogan Hall, St Martin in the Fields, St James’s Piccadilly, Estonia Concert Hall, Casa Da Musica in Porto, Oslo Opera House and the Bridgewater Hall, with orchestras such as the Orchestre de Paris, Norwegian Radio Orchestra, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Kremerata Baltica, Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, RCM Contemporary Ensemble, Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, Liverpool Mozart Orchestra and Pärnu City Orchestra. In 2012, she made her recording debut with EMI Classics in the EMI Digital Debut series. In the same year she performed Ligeti’s violin concerto twice with the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra and later with the RCM Philharmonic Orchestra. She is an inaugural prize winner of the City Music Foundation 2013 and has appeared on the BBC Radio 3 In Tune programme. Her second CD, recorded with her brother Mihkel Poll, was released in summer 2017 and features works by 20th and 21st century composers such as Enescu, Poulenc, Schönberg and Tüür.
Mari is currently first concertmaster of the Estonian National Opera Orchestra and teaches at the Estonian Academy of Theatre and Music. From 2015 to 2019 she was the second concertmaster of the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra and she has been invited to lead and co-lead orchestras such as the Stockholm Philharmonic, Norrbotten NEO contemporary ensemble, Bodo Sinfonietta, Norwegian Chamber Orchestra and Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra. Mari Poll has won many prizes at international competitions, including the third prize at the Vibrarte International Violin Competition in France and first prize at the Derek Butler London Prize. She is a laureate of the CSMUNICAJA Soloist Competition and the RCM Concerto Competition, took the special prize at the L. Spohr International Violin Competition and fifth prize at the Kloster Schöntal International Violin Competition in Germany. In 2012/13 she held the Constant and Kit Lambert Junior Fellowship at the Royal College of Music and in the same year was awarded the Tagore Gold Medal – presented to her by HRH the Prince of Wales – of the Royal College of Music. She has performed at various festivals such as La Folle Journée, Bergen International Festival, Bowdoin International Summer Music Festival, Courchevel Music Festival and Ultima Contemporary Music Festival.
Mari is a graduate of the Royal College of Music in London, where she studied with Jan Repko and later Radu Blidar. She was supported by the Derek Butler London Trust and the Worshipful Company of Musicians. She also holds a Soloist Diploma from the Norwegian Academy of Music, where she studied with Peter Herresthal. She has given masterclasses at the Royal College of Music and has worked as an assistant to Jan Repko and Peter Herresthal.
Mari Poll currently plays a 1723 Nicolaus Gagliano violin, kindly loaned to her by Aare Kaarma and the Estonian Foundation of Musical Instruments.