Continuum with Paul Simon, Trey Anastasio (Phish), a-Ha
Theremin with Simon & Garfunkel, The Boston Pops, Bobby McFerrin, Gotye, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Bernie Worrell
Piano/keyboards with Wayne Shorter, Willie Nelson, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Bette Midler, Stevie Wonder
Co-director of The NY Theremin Society
Played at Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden, The Blue Note, Tokyo Dome, CBGB’s, The Colosseum (Rome), and for strippers at truck drivers’ convention
Rob Schwimmer (Polygraph Lounge/ The NY Theremin Society) is a composer-pianist/keyboardist, thereminist, vocalist and Continuum player who has performed and recorded throughout the world. The New York Times praises Rob for his “Virtuosity, magic, and humor.” He has worked with Simon and Garfunkel,Wayne Shorter, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Stevie Wonder, Bobby McFerrin, Willie Nelson, Paul Simon, Gotye, Chaka Khan, Laurie Anderson, Bette Midler, Queen Latifah, Arif Mardin, Adam Guettel, Paul Bley, Mary Cleere Haran, T-Bone Walker, Sam Rivers, Marc Shaiman, The Klezmatics, Christian Marclay, Matthew Barney, David Krakauer, Ang Lee, Maria Schneider, Michel Gondry, Trey Anastasio, Bernie Worrell, Nels Cline, Annette Peacock, Gwyneth Paltrow, Marshall Brickman, Karen Black, Larry Campbell, Teresa Williams, Josh Groban, Mabou Mines, Geoffrey Holder, John Cale, Steve Buscemi, Theo Bleckmann, John Stubblefield, Burt Bacharach, The Roches, Scott Robinson, Edie Brickell, Teo Macero, Hal Willner, Vernon Reid, The Everly Brothers, Ethel, James Emery, Bela Fleck, Lenny Kaye, Kurt Vonnegut, Anjani Thomas, Odetta, Drepung Loseling Tibetan Monks, Sussan Deyhim, Bernie Worrell, producer John Simon, Joseph Jarman, Alwin Nikolai/ Murray Louis Dance Company, Marc Ribot, Frank London, C&C Music Factory and Sammy Davis Jr. among others.
Working as a solo artist and as a founding member of the highly acclaimed Polygraph Lounge duo with multi-instrumentalist Mark Stewart (Bang On A Can Allstars/Paul Simon) Rob’s solo piano playing on his CD “Beyond The Sky” has been widely lauded in both classical and jazz publications: Hailed as “Extraordinary” in Gramophone and “Shaping up to be the finest solo piano CD of the year” in The NYC Jazz Record while The New York Times praised his “…machine-gun speed and clarity.” Schwimmer has also recently performed his own version of Gershwin’s Rhapsody In Blue with orchestra. Rob was commissioned by The Metropolitan Museum last season to write new music for the 50th anniversary showing of the movie A Charlie Brown Christmas which he performed live with trio. Schwimmer is also one of the few pianists chosen for silent movie accompaniment at The Museum of Modern Art. Rob’s other commissions include Carnegie Hall and a new work for The Metropolitan Museum.
He composed the score for Cynthia Wade’s 2008 Academy Award winner “Freeheld” in the Documentary Short category as well as David Frankel’s Oscar winner “Dear Diary” for Dreamworks (their first Oscar) in the Live Action Short in 1997. Rob’s compositions have been featured in theater, television series and movies, silent films, documentaries and feature films as well as Rob’s continuing series of solo concerts.
Rob is one of the top theremin virtuosos in the world and was recently featured on CBS Sunday Morning, the Leonard Lopate show on WNYC, Fox News, the popular PBS series “History Detectives,” and Al Jazeera America TV as well as in The NY Times and Wall St Journal. He is a founding member and co-director of The NY Theremin Society. His appearances as theremin soloist include The Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Caramoor (which included Rob’s theremin arrangement of Bernard Herrmann’s “Scene d’Amour” from Vertigo,) The Little Orchestra at Lincoln Center, with Bobby McFerrin at Carnegie Hall and Simon & Garfunkel’s world tours (including the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25th Anniversary show at Madison Square Garden) where he also played keyboards and sang. In addition to his CD Theremin Noir (with Uri Caine and Mark Feldman,) Rob has performed as featured thereminist on Trey Anastasio’s latest album Traveler, Matthew Barney’s epic movie Cremaster 3, the 2009 R.W. Goodwin feature Alien Trespass, CBS television series Now and Again and A&E’s Breakfast With the Arts. He was chosen to perform at a sold out concert in the Disney Concert Hall (LA) as part of legendary The 10 Piece Theremin Orchestra. Rob was recently interviewed by Faith Salie (Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me) for CBS Sunday Morning and The NY Theremin Society concert was filmed as part of the same segment about the resurgence of the theremin. Schwimmer premiered a new silent movie soundtrack (The Fall of the House of Usher–1928) featuring live theremin at The NY Theremin Society’s recent residency at Bucknell University and given its NYC premiere at The Tribeca New Music Festival.
Rob has also added the incredible new instrument the Haken Continuum to his musical arsenal. Recent recording sessions on Continuum include Paul Simon and Trey Anastasio. Rob recently gave the world premiere of Martinu’s Fantasty for Theremin or Ondes Martenot, Oboe, Piano, and String Quartet on the Haken Continuum at The Moab Music Festical in Utah.
He has performed at venues all over the world including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, 92nd St. Y, the Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Tokyo Dome, Madison Square Garden, The Blue Note, CBGB’s and the Colosseum (Rome) before a crowd of over 600,000. Schwimmer’s work can be heard on CBS/Sony, Warner Brothers, Toshiba/ EMI, Def Jam/ Island, Manhattan/Blue Note, Dorian, NHK, Capricorn, Evidence, Knitting Factory, Polystar, Traditional Crossroads, Dreamworks SKG, Universal Pictures, TriStar Pictures, HBO, Cinemax, Showtime, CBS, NBC, ABC, Discovery, Lifetime, Noggin, A&E, NPR and Nickelodeon.
Rob Schwimmer is exclusively represented by Bernstein Artists, Inc.