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Sharan Leventhal

Violin; Chamber Music Faculty

Sharan Leventhal, violin, has toured four continents as a soloist, chamber musician and teacher. Since winning the Kranischsteiner Musikpreis at the 1984 International Contemporary Music Festival in Darmstadt, Germany, she has built an international reputation as a champion of contemporary music.  Her more than 150 premieres include works written by Gunther Schuller, Ben Johnston, Virgil Thomson, William Kraft, Pauline Oliveros, Taina León, Simon Bainbridge, Scott Wheeler, and Fred Hersch.

Equally active in traditional venues, Leventhal has appeared as a soloist with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra; the Toledo, Milwaukee, Gulf Coast, Topeka, Dayton and Albany symphonies; and the Wisconsin, Cleveland, and Santa Rosa chamber orchestras, among others.  She is a member of the Gramercy Trio, the Kepler Quartet, and the Boston Artists Ensemble; was a founding member of Marimolin; and has appeared with the Muir Quartet, the Apple Hill Chamber Players, Present Music, and the Boston Chamber Music Society.

Leventhal has received grants from Chamber Music America (2011), the Fromm Foundation (2011), the Aaron Copland Fund for Music Recording (2011, 2006, 2003, 1999, 1992), the Serge Koussevitzky Music Foundation (1992), American Academy of Arts & Letters (2007), Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trust (2011, 2008), and the National Endowment for the Arts (1993, 1988, 1987), among others.

Recordings include the string quartets of Ben Johnston with the Kepler Quartet (New World 2006 and 2011), the violin and piano works of Virgil Thomson (Northeastern Recordings, 1990), Gramercy Trio (Parma Recordings, 2008; Naxos, 2007; Newport Classic, Ltd., 2004), and discs by Marimolin (GM Recordings, 1988 and 1996, and Catalyst/BMG, 1995). She has recorded broadcasts for the BBC, ORF (Austria), Musikradion (Sweden), WGBH-Boston, and WNYC.  

Leventhal teaches at The Boston Conservatory and Brandeis University, and has served on the faculties of Michigan State University and Berklee College of Music. Summer teaching includes the Wintergreen Music Festival, Interlochen Arts Camp, the Asian Youth Orchestra in Hong Kong, and Apple Hill. She presents concerts, seminars, master classes and lectures throughout the United States, South America and Europe, and during the 1990s taught regularly at the Bruckner-Konservatorium in Linz, Austria. She received her BM from Boston University and her MM from Yale University, while studying with Joseph Silverstein, having studied previously with Thomas Moore and Sally Thomas, among others.

Leventhal is active in the American String Teachers Association, where she serves as chamber music editor for the organization’s publication (American String Teacher), and chair of the studio teacher’s committee. From 2012-14, she served as president of the Massachusetts chapter. Leventhal is the founder and director of Play On, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting active participation in music making. Her music blog is titled, Just tuning In. 

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