Born circa 1953, American trumpeter, teacher and conductor Rolf Smedvig grew up in Seattle into a Scandinavian family. His mother was a violinist in the Seattle Symphony and his father a composer and music teacher. He studied with Maurice André and at Boston University.
Known for his lyrical sound, at thirteen he performed as a soloist with the Seattle Symphony, at nineteen was one of the youngest musicians hired by the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and at twenty-five became the Boston Symphony's Principal Trumpet.
He was co-founder of the five member Empire Brass Quartet (later Empire Brass) which toured internationally and recorded extensively for labels including Angel, EMI and Telarc.
He taught at the Tanglewood Music Center and played as a soloist with orchestras including the NHK Symphony, the Chicago Symphony, the Cambridge Chamber Orchestra and the National Symphony in Washington DC.
He also performed as a conductor, as music director of the Williamsport Symphony and guest conductor of the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra, the Northwest Chamber Orchestra and the Simon Bolivar Orchestra in Caracas.
Smedvig died suddenly, at home in West Stockbridge, Massachusetts on 27 April 2015, aged sixty-two.