Lura Johnson

Guest Keyboard

Pianist Lura Johnson, recently named a Steinway Artist, has established herself as one of the Mid Atlantic’s most prominent ensemble pianists. Hailed as “brilliant” by the Washington Post, Ms. Johnson is celebrated for her passionate and insightful interpretations of the standard repertoire, and esteemed by colleagues for her uncommon sensitivity and skill as a collaborative partner. Trained by luminaries Leon Fleisher and Robert McDonald, she is the Principal Pianist of the Delaware Symphony and has performed regularly with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Marin Alsop since 2007. She has collaborated extensively in orchestral performances and recordings with such artists as Yo Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, Leila Josefowicz, and Jean-Yves Thibaudet. Ms. Johnson has performed as soloist with the Baltimore Symphony, as well as with regional orchestras in Maryland, Ohio, Delaware, and Massachusetts.

Devoted to chamber music from an early age, Lura Johnson fields a steady stream of invitations to play in ensembles, most frequently with colleagues in the BSO, including concertmaster Jonathan Carney, with whom she has presented the complete Brahms violin sonata cycle. She has been a frequent guest artist at the Garth Newel Music Center in Warm Springs, Virginia. Recent recital partners include clarinetist Anthony McGill, cellist Amit Peled, and flutist Marina Piccinini, among others.

Ms. Johnson was most recently appointed Artistic Director of Baltimore chamber music series Music in the Great Hall, a well-established Baltimore area series with performances by both emerging and established artists

Equally at home with contemporary music, she performs with VERGE Ensemble, who are in residence at Washington’s Corcoran Gallery and have rapidly established a commanding presence in the new music community both nationally and abroad.

Ms. Johnson’s discography includes a chamber music disc released in 2001 with award winning flutist Christina Jennings which won praise from critics. In November 2010 Centaur Records released her second chamber music disc, Inner Voice, a recital with BSO violist Peter Minkler featuring sonatas by George Rochberg and Dmitri Shostakovich as well as short pieces by Benjamin Britten and Arvo Pärt. Ms. Johnson can also be heard on several recordings released by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, including Naxos’ Grammy nominated release of the Bernstein Mass, on which she played principal keyboard.

A committed teacher, she serves on the faculty of Peabody Conservatory and the International Music Institute and Festival.

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