He was born in a Jewish family in Vilnius, Lithuania and studied violin with Leopold Auer at the St. Petersburg Conservatory. He arrived in the United States in 1923 to take a job as an assistant to Auer. Mr. Bronstein had one daughter, Ariana Bronne, who taught at the Manhattan School of Music.
Mr. Bronstein's teaching career spanned 65 years and was responsible for a large number of the current generation of leading violin teachers and performers. He taught at the Hartt School in Hartford, Boston University, Manhattan School of Music, Queens College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He is remembered annually at the Manhattan School of Music with the Raphael Bronstein Award. Bronstein's students have included Elmar Oliveira, Michael Ludwig, Martha Strongin Katz, Lya Stern, Jay Zhong, Kerry McDermott, Judith Morse, Estelle Kerner, Richard Auldon Clark and his own daughter Ariana Bronne. Daniel Kobialka and Phillip Ruder are also among Bronstein's most noteworthy students.
He founded and conducted the Bronstein Symphonietta in 1949. He wrote the Science of Violin Playing.
- "Raphael Bronstein, 93, Noted Violin Teacher". The New York Times. November 5, 1988. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-10-22. Retrieved 2013-01-07. Raphael Bronstein Award
- Bronstein, Raphael (2016). The Science of Violin Playing, Echo Point Books & Media; Reprint ed. edition (July 15, 2016), ISBN 1626546193.
- Applebaum, Samuel. The way they play, Paganiniana Publications, 1984.
- Press, Jaques Cattell. Who's Who in American music. Classical, 1st edition, R. R. Bowker, 1983.