Regina Carter Receives MacArthur Grant


We are very proud of Regina Carter, a Detroit native who performed for many years with Detroit's all-female jazz group, "Straight Ahead."

$500,000 is music to ex-Detroiter's ears


September 19, 2006


Jazz violinist Regina Carter is one of 25 recipients of this year's MacArthur Foundation grants. (NAN MELVILLE/New York Times)

What's it like getting a cold call awarding you $500,000 with no strings attached?

"I thought it was a prank," said Detroit-born jazz violinist Regina Carter, one of 25 winners of a 2006 grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation of Chicago. "I asked for his name and number, hung up and looked up the MacArthur Foundation to see if they matched."

Announced today, the winners of the so-called genius grants come from many fields and were selected for their creativity and originality. Candidates don't know they are nominated until they win.

The leading jazz violinist of her generation, the 44-year-old New York resident is known for the brushfire intensity and contagious excitement generated by her improvisations. Her CDs have explored swing-era ballads, Detroit's jazz legacy, Afro-Cuban styles and quasi-classical works.

She attracted worldwide attention in 2001, when she became the first jazz musician to play Paganini's Guarneri del Gesu violin of 1743, a historic treasure in Italy.

Copyright 2006 Detroit Free Press Inc.

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