Marlene Rice, violinist, composer and arranger, is a regular performer with the renowned Jazz string quartet, Quartette Indigo, and co-founder of the Jazz string trio Sojourner. As a featured soloist and ensemble player, she has recorded and performed with a myriad of world-class artists, and has recorded on some of the biggest hits of recent years.
Marlene's improvising skills have expanded her career to impressive heights, and she has traveled the world performing and recording. She has toured extensively with jazz saxophonist James Carter as a featured artist. She was a featured soloist with Cassandra Wilson's "Traveling Miles: Music from Miles Davis" at Lincoln Center. She has also performed with Greg Osby Quartet with Strings, McCoy Tyner at Lincoln Center, Gilberto Santa Rosa at Carnegie Hall, Will Downing and Kenny Latimer at The Apollo, as a featured soloist with Quartette Indigo, with James Blood Ulmer at Symphony Space, and with Aretha Franklin in a music video. In her illustrious career, she has supported Freddie Hubbard, Dionne Warwick and Burt Bacharach, Smokey Robinson, Sammy Davis Jr., Rod Stewart, The Moody Blues, Dianne Carrol & Vic Damone, Marvin Hamlish, Marilyn McCoo, Lou Rawls and Dee Dee Jackson, Craig Harris, Soldier String Quartet and the Black Rock Coalition, and many others.
In the theatre world, as well, she has traveled to Cork Ireland with performing-artist Tiye Giraud and choreographer Martha Bowers in "Safe Harbor," and with David "Happy" Williams to the Pan Royale Festival in Trinidad. In March 2004, she performed and was featured with Steve Colson and Amiri Baraka in "Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr." at the Sons d'Hiver Music Festival in Paris and Lille, France. She has also been a featured improviser with Tanya Leon's "Son Sonora Ensemble" at the National Black Arts Festival in Atlanta. Some of her performances in 2005 have included featured work with Edward Ratliff in Vienna Austria at the Impuls Tanz Festival, John Blake Jr. at the Jazz Gallery for "From Africa to America Fiddle Music," and Akua Dixon's Swing Quartette in Milan, Italy.
Marlene has played on many of the biggest recordings of recent years, including those by Beyoncé Knowles (Dangerously In Love), India.Arie (Acoustic Soul), Lauryn Hill (The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill), Aretha Franklin (A Rose Is Still A Rose - song track), Jessica Simpson (In This Skin). She has also been featured on the noted jazz recordings of Blue Note Jazz artist Greg Osby (Symbols Of Light A Solution), Sekou Sundiata (Long Story Short) and Steve Coleman (Genesis and The Opening of The Way). Her work includes performances and recording work with artists across the musical spectrum, including Nona Hendryx, Goodie Mob, Society of Soul, Tony Rich, Organized Noize and numerous others. Television performances include "Saturday Night Live" with India.Arie and Busta Rhymes, "The David Letterman Show" with Aretha Franklin, "Late Night with Conan O’Brien" with Guided By Voices and "Oxygen’s Second Anniversary Celebration" with India.Arie. Television and major motion picture soundtrack work includes the movie "Maid in Manhattan," and "Soul Food," as well as the PBS/American Experience TV special, "Marcus Garvey: Look For Me In The Whirlwind." Marlene is currently working on her debut CD titled In A Heartbeat, to be released in 2005.
Marlene hails from Detroit, a city renowned as a breeding ground for hard bop and Jazz violinists. Her introduction to jazz was due to her beloved high school orchestra teacher, Anderson White, unexpectedly gesturing her to stand a take a solo during a concert. She holds a Bachelor's degree from Eastern Michigan University and a Master's degree in Music from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Ms. Rice has also done extensive orchestral work with The Savannah Symphony Orchestra and The Alabama Symphony Orchestra.