Labeled as one of the fastest shredders of all time, The Great Kat should probably be a household name by now.
The Great Kat is actually Katherine Thomas, a violin virtuoso who has been mastering the guitar for the past 3 decades. Meshing her love for classical music with her love for heavy metal, she has stated that she feels she is Beethoven reincarnated. Her technical skills mixed with her over the top persona makes her easily compared to Yngwie Malmsteen.
Kat was born in England and moved to the New York are at age 3. She started learning piano and violin at a young age and at the age of 15, she won a full scholarship to attend the prestigious Juilliard School in New York City as a violin student. Kat became the concertmaster of the Juilliard pre-college orchestra winning several awards and prestige titles.
After graduating with honors, she went on to travel and play violin around the U.S., Mexico and Europe. She won several competitions and played for political leaders as well as playing on the song "Right Brain Lover" by Timothy Leary. From there she moved on to dedicating her career to classical music meet speed metal on the guitar.
Her techniques are explained best on her website:
The Great Kat Shred Guitar Virtuoso is the only musician taking note-for-note authentic Classical Music scores (from Vivaldi, Beethoven, Bach, Wagner, Liszt, Paganini, Sarasate, Bazzini, Rossini and more) and entering the original Classical Music scores into music-notation software. The Great Kat then edits, arranges, and orchestrates the entire scores with Shred Guitar and Violin virtuosity and mixes it with Speed Metal band and Classical orchestra. The Great Kat’s music is known worldwide for its phenomenal speeds, complicated Classical motives, counterpoint layering, guitar riffs, maniacal screams, heavy rhythms and thrashing sounds.
Kat's stage-shows are theatrical, fun, bloody and noisy. Think early 80's W.A.S.P. mixed with Gwar.
She often refers to herself in third person. She dresses as a dominatrix and is known for on stage banter to the audience. To say she is one of a kind is an understatement. Find out more about her on her website.