for her intensity and the beauty of her sound, Laurie Smukler is an artist who
is active as soloist and recitalist. In addition she has established a
reputation as one of the finest chamber musicians in the country. Growing up in
Cleveland, she began her studies at the Cleveland Institute of Music, with
pedagogue Margaret Randall. She started performing early, winning local
competitions, and playing as soloist with the Cleveland Orchestra at the age of
fourteen. She received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Juilliard School
where she studied with Ivan Galamian. Other teachers who had a powerful
influence on her development were Donald Weilerstein, Robert Mann, Rudolf
Serkin and Menahem Pressler.
Ms. Smukler’s performing career has been
multi-faceted. As the original and founding first violinist of the Mendelssohn
String Quartet, she spent eight years traveling and performing internationally
with them. She has performed and toured with the Lincoln Center Chamber Music
Society. With her husband, violist Ira Weller, she directed and performed in
the respected series “The Collection in Concert”, at the Pierpont Morgan
Library. She has performed and toured as the first violinist of two school
affiliated string quartets, the Bard Festival String Quartet and the Purchase
Faculty String Quartet. She collaborates frequently with esteemed colleagues in
varied chamber ensembles, including recently, trio performances with cellist
Joel Krosnick and pianist Seymour Lipkin.
She plays regularly at the chamber series, DaCamera of Houston.
highlights of this season include this duo recital, with cellist Joel Krosnick,
at Symphony Space in New York City.It includes works by Eliot Carter and Ralph
Shapey, as well as the New York premier of a newly commissioned work by
Shulamit Ran. The world premier took place at the Kneisel Hall Chamber Music
Festival in July. This season also includes violin andpiano recitals in
Philadelphia, New York City, the University of British Columbia, and Blue Hill,
Dedicated to teaching as well as to performing, Laurie Smukler is a respected
member of the faculties of the Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College of
Music and the Conservatory of Music at Bard College. She spent 17 years as a
professor of violin and chamber music at Purchase College Conservatory of
Music., ten of those years as Head of the String Department. Ms. Smukler also teaches
and performs at the prestigious Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival and School
in Blue Hill, Maine, in the summer. She
is often an invited guest to present masterclasses at conservatories and music
schools across the country, such as the Shepherd School of Rice University,
Peabody Conservatory, the University of Michigan, the University of Tennessee
at Memphis, and Oberlin College.
has been an invited guest at many summer festivals, including Kneisel Hall, the
Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the Marlboro Festival, Chamber Music
Northwest, the Bard Festival, the Mostly Mozart Festival, the Skaneateles
Festival, Music Mountain and the Mount Desert Island Festival.
Ms. Smukler is a sought after collaborator, and has performed with many of the
great artists of our day. She also has a particular interest in contemporary
music and has premiered works by many composers including Ned Rorem, Morton
Subotnik, Steven Paulus, Shulamit Ran, and Bruce Adolphe. Ms. Smukler plays a Petrus Guarnerius violin
made in Venice in 1738.