Monday, October 19, 2009

Leila Josefowicz

Leila Josefowicz (Leila Bronia Josefowicz) is a Canadian violinist born on October 20, 1977 (Heifetz was 76 years old.) She is an intense genius who is sometimes not well-understood. She also plays the violin stupendously well. She has been criticized for her physicality while playing but you will not likely find someone performing with greater conviction, precision, and audacity. She began violin lessons at age three. By age 8, she was studying with Robert Lipsett in Los Angeles. She entered the Curtis Institute of Music (Philadelphia) at age 13 where she studied with Jaime Laredo, Joseph Gingold, Jascha Brodsky, and Felix Galimir, among others. By this time, she was already concertizing. She graduated from Curtis in 1997. There is an impressive video of her (on YouTube) playing Paganini with the Boston Pops (conducted by John Williams) at a very young age. Her Carnegie Hall debut was in 1994. Her discography - even this early in her career - is fairly extensive.  Josefowicz was the recipient of a no-strings-attached MacArthur grant in 2008. (Jazz violinist Regina Carter received one in 2006.)  She has played a 1739 and a 1724 Guarnerius.

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