Photo credit: © Kevin Lowery

One of the Riverside Symphonia’s favorite guest artists will present two classically structured sonatas along with a variety of showpieces based on folk musical traditions from different corners of the world.

Canadian-born violinist Lara St. John has been described as “something of a phenomenon” by The Strad and a “high-powered soloist” by the New York Times.

She has performed as soloist with the orchestras of Cleveland, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, the Boston Pops, Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, NDR Symphony, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, Strasbourg Philharmonic, Bournemouth Symphony, Camerata Ireland, Belgrade Symphony, Amsterdam Symphony, and the Akbank Chamber Orchestra in Turkey, among others.

Lara began playing the violin when she was two years old. She made her first appearance as soloist with orchestra at age four, and her European debut with the Gulbenkian Orchestra when she was 10. She toured Spain, France, Portugal and Hungary at ages 12 and 13 and entered the Curtis Institute at 13. Her teachers have included Felix Galimir and Joey Corpus.

Lara has also performed with the Queensland Orchestra, Adelaide Symphony, ACO², Auckland Philharmonia, Tokyo Symphony, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony, Hong Kong Philharmonic, China Philharmonic, Hangzhou Symphony and the Shanghai Symphony.

Recitals in major concert halls have included New York, Boston, San Francisco, Ravinia, Wolf Trap, Washington DC, Prague, Berlin, Toronto, Montreal and in the Forbidden City.

The Los Angeles Times wrote “Lara St. John happens to be a volcanic violinist with a huge, fabulous tone that pours out of her like molten lava. She has technique to burn and plays at a constant high heat.”

Lara owns and runs her own label, Ancalagon, which she founded in 1999. Bach: the Six Sonatas & Partitas for Violin Solo was the best-selling double album on iTunes in 2007. Her 2008 world premiere recording of Matthew Hindson’s Violin Concerto prompted Gramophone to write: “It’s the sort of work that should get audiences running, not walking, back to concert halls on new-music nights.”

She has been featured in People, US News and World Report, on CNN’s Showbiz Today, NPR’s All Things Considered, CBC, BBC, a Bravo! Special: Live At the Rehearsal Hall and on the cover of Strings.

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