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Portrait of Lorenz GammaLorenz Gamma


Office: UMC-C407
Phone: 562.985.4781

Violinist Lorenz Gamma is internationally active as soloist, recitalist, chamber musician and teacher. He has given master classes in the United States, Europe, and Asia and has taught violin first as visiting professor at University of California, Los Angeles before joining the faculties at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) and California State University, Long Beach. In the Fall of 2008, Mr. Gamma also served as visiting professor at Indiana University in Bloomington, where he taught interim a full class of violinists.

As former co-leader of the Amar Quartet of Switzerland Mr. Gamma performed a full-time concert schedule touring through many of Europe’s most important chamber music venues, including the Tonhalle in Zurich, the Victoria Hall in Geneva, the Residence in Munich, the Stefaniensaal in Graz, the Cologne Philharmonic, as well as in many other cities such as London, Paris, New York, Teheran etc. From 1999-2007, the Amar Quartet has been one of just two groups worldwide performing permanently on a set of four Stradivari instruments. Prior to his activity with the Amar Quartet Lorenz Gamma served as concertmaster of the Northwest Sinfonietta in Seattle and later as Principal of the Zurich Opera Orchestra.

As a soloist Lorenz Gamma has performed over twenty different concertos by Bach, Beethoven, Berg, Bruch, Lutoslawski, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Piazzolla, Schumann, Spohr, Tartini, Vivaldi, Wieniawski. He also holds an extensive record of appearances on radio, both in Europe and in the United States. His radio broadcasts and CD recordings include Schubert’s String Quintet and Piano Trio in E-flat, the Quartet for the End of Time by Messiæn, the complete String Quartets as well as works for Violin and Piano and the Piano Sextet by Carlos Chávez, the Dvorák Piano Quintet, the Mozart Clarinet Quintet, sonatas and partitas by Bach, Lazarof, Mozart and Ravel, as well as string quartets by Brahms, Debussy, Dvorák, Haydn, Hindemith, Ives, Janácek, Mozart, Ravel, Shostakovich, Smith, Ullmann and Verdi. Musicians he collaborated with include Heinz Holliger, Paul Katz, Ronald Leonard, Donald McInnes, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, Michelle Zukowski and many others.

Mr. Gamma’s students have won numerous prizes and gone on to continue their studies at such schools as Indiana University, Manhattan and Eastman Schools of Music, University of Southern California and others. Having performed internationally a large part of the string quartet repertoire of more than fifty composers, as well as most of the other standard chamber music repertoire of over eighty composers, Lorenz Gamma dedicates himself with passion to coaching chamber music in addition to teaching violin.

Mr. Gamma is a frequent guest at various summer festivals and serves since 2002 as first violinist of Southwest Chamber Music. The ensemble’s recordings of the complete chamber works of Carlos Chávez have been nominated for six GRAMMY Awards and received two in 2004 and 2005. The ensemble work Aura by Grawemeyer Award winning composer Chinary Ung, commissioned, premiered and recorded by the ensemble in 2006, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

Lorenz Gamma was born in Switzerland, where he received his initial training as a violinist. His further studies took place in the United States, with Franco Gulli, Steven Staryk and Mark Kaplan.


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