This repeat engagement with the Redlands Symphony Orchestra marks her first performance of the Grieg Piano Concerto since 1990 when at the age of 17 she made her debut with the National Symphony Orchestra in six concerts at the Kennedy Center.
Hailed as a pianist who “communicates deep artistic understanding through a powerful and virtuosic technique”, Lisa Leonard enjoys a diverse career as soloist, chamber musician, and educator. She has appeared throughout Europe, Japan, Russia, and North America with many orchestras including recent performances with the Oregon Mozart Players, Williamsburg Symphonia and the Simon Bolivar Orchestra of Venezuela under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel. An active chamber musician, she has performed with members of the Berlin, Vienna, New York, Cleveland and Cincinnati Symphonies in addition to members of the American and Mendelssohn String Quartets, and the Empire Brass Quintet in performances featured on National Public Radios’ “Performance Today” and “Command Performance” programs. Her love of new music has resulted in several premieres of both solo and chamber music including James Stephenson’s Concerto for Trumpet and Piano which was written for her and her husband, Marc Reese, and which they premiered with the Lynn University Philharmonia. The performance was noted as one of South Florida’s Top 10 performances of 2007, which also included her performance of the Brahms F minor Piano Quintet at the Palm Beach Chamber Music Festival.
Ms. Leonard has served on the faculties of the North Carolina School of the Arts, the Meadowmount School of Music, and the Las Vegas Music Festival. She has performed at the Pacific Music Festival, Gilmore International, Caramoor, the East/West International Festival and is currently the head of the Graduate Instrumental Collaborative Piano Program at Lynn University. She can be heard on the Klavier, Centaur, and Summit labels and has been featured on Japan’s NHK television network. A native of Washington D.C., Ms. Leonard received her M.M. and B.M. from the Manhattan School of Music, where she was the premiere recipient of both the Rubinstein and Balsam awards, two of the highest awards given. Her former teachers include Marc Silverman, Suzanne W. Guy, Eric Larsen, Isidore Cohen, Thomas Schumacher, Cynthia Phelps, David Geber and the Meadowmount Trio.