Laura Sewell: Associate Director

Cellist Laura Sewell enjoys an active and varied musical career. From 2007-2016, she was a member of the esteemed Artaria String Quartet. In recent seasons, the quartet was appointed as one of Minnesota Public Radio’s ensembles-in-residence, was featured on Twin Cities Public Television’s “Minnesota Originals” series, and performed the complete Shostakovich quartet cycle to critical acclaim. Earlier in her career, Ms. Sewell was the founding cellist of the award-winning Lark Quartet. During her tenure in that ensemble the quartet won the bronze medal at the Banff International String Quartet Competition, served as the graduate string quartet-in-residence at the Juilliard School, and had a teaching residency at San Diego State University.  Her chamber music teachers have included members of the Juilliard, American, Tokyo, Guarneri and Budapest quartets, as well as master teachers Felix Galimir, Josef Gingold, and William Pleeth. Ms. Sewell received her Bachelor’s Degree from the Juilliard School where she was a student of Leonard Rose, and her Master’s Degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music where she studied with Alan Harris. She has done additional cello study with Ronald Leonard, Gabor Rejto and Laszlo Varga, and has performed in masterclasses for Janos Starker and Bernard Greenhouse. As a student she attended summer festivals at Aspen, Tanglewood, Interlochen, Meadowmount, and Aldeburgh. She also had the unique opportunity, at the age of 17, to spend half a year in London studying with the legendary cellist, Jacqueline duPre. Ms. Sewell has performed concertos and appeared in solo recitals in New York and throughout the Midwest, including the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series on WFMT in Chicago. She has appeared on American Public Media’s “Saint Paul Sunday” and on “A Prairie Home Companion” on several occasions.  Since 1993 she and renowned jazz pianist, Butch Thompson, have performed together as a duo and have recorded a critically acclaimed CD. She has had solo cello works written for her by distinguished composers Paul Schoenfield, Stephen Paulus and Steve Heitzeg. Over the past two decades, Ms. Sewell has been on the faculties of Augsburg College, the MacPhail Center for Music, Madeline Island Music Camp, Stringwood, and the Artaria Chamber Music School.

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