Jonathan Leshnoff

Jonathan Leshnoff

b. 1973



Distinguished by The New York Times as “a leader of contemporary American lyricism,” GRAMMY-nominated composer Jonathan Leshnoff is renowned for his music's striking harmonies, structural complexity, and powerful themes. The Baltimore-based composer has been ranked among the most performed living composers by American orchestras in recent seasons and his compositions have been performed by leading international orchestras and chamber ensembles in hundreds of concerts worldwide. He has received recent commissions from Carnegie Hall, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of Atlanta, Baltimore, Dallas, Kansas City, Nashville, and Pittsburgh, among others. Leshnoff’s compositions have also been premiered by classical music’s most celebrated soloists, including Gil Shaham, Johannes Moser, Manuel Barrueco, Noah Bendix-Balgley, and Joyce Yang.

There are eight all-Leshnoff albums to date. Among his most notable recent releases is the 2019 Naxos recording exclusively featuring Leshnoff’s music performed by the Nashville Symphony and conductor Giancarlo Guerrero; nominated for a GRAMMY for Best Classical Compendium, the CD included the world premiere performance of his Symphony No. 4, “Heichalos” with the Violins of Hope. In the fall of 2020, Reference Recordings released a highly acclaimed all-Leshnoff disc featuring world premiere recordings of his Piano Concerto and his Symphony No. 3 commemorating World War I. Earlier in 2020, Reference Recordings released an extensively reviewed album featuring the world premiere performance of Leshnoff’s Double Concerto for Clarinet and Bassoon by the Pittsburgh Symphony and conductor Manfred Honeck, which made it to the top of the Billboard charts. Other notable releases include a 2016 recording of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus performing Leshnoff’s Symphony No. 2 and Zohar oratorio, and three earlier all-Leshnoff albums—of both his orchestral and chamber music works—on the Naxos American Classics label. A disc featuring all of his string quartets was also released in August 2020.

Celebrated by BBC Music Magazine as “enchanting” and by American Record Guide as “lyrical, virtuosic, tender, and passionate all at once,” Leshnoff’s music has been lauded by Strings Magazine as “distinct from anything else that’s out there” and by The Baltimore Sun as “remarkably assured, cohesively constructed and radiantly lyrical.” Leshnoff’s catalog is vast, including several symphonies, various concerti, and solo and chamber music works. Leshnoff is a Professor of Music at Towson University.

Photo Credit: Erica Abbey Photography

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