As a nationally recognized scholar on the music of Sergei Prokofiev, Deborah Rifkin was invited to teach a graduate seminar about Prokofiev's distinctive chromatic language at the Eastman School of Music. The seminar was part of a course, "Prokofiev, Shostakovich & The Great Patriotic War," on the fascinating history and music of these two Soviet composers in the years surrounding World War II.
Rifkin is an associate professor and department chair in the Ithaca College School of Music. She earned a Ph.D. from the Eastman School of Music; M.M. University of Michigan (with a minor in violin performance); and B.A. from Binghamton University. She was formerly an assistant professor at Oberlin College Conservatory.