Laurel Zucker Flutist
Gramophone Magazine describes Ms. Zucker’s flute playing as “as polished and gratifying as Rampal and Galway. Zucker’s interpretations are splendid all round. Her tone is airy and sweet, her virtuosity graceful.”
2012 Guitar Magazine reviewed CD, Soundscapes of The Americas, states ‘Zucker performs with tremendous authority and musicianship and plays with enviable ease. She also illustrates here that she is a composer of note; there is nothing here which drops below superb.
2004 Gramophone “strongly recommended” The Complete Telemann Fantasies for Flute and The Complete J.S. Bach Flute Sonatas on Cantilena Records describing her performances as “intelligent, naturally phrased and highly musical with a rich sound beyond reproach.
August 2003 book, Inspirational Stories from the World’s Best Flute Players, Laurel Zucker is featured along with James Galway, Paula Robison, Herbie Mann, Ian Andersen, and Julius Baker.
Fanfare Magazine refers to Ms. Zucker “as a forceful advocate for 20th century music,” and when she was awarded the Aaron Copland Fund for Music from the American Music Center to record the 1998 Take a Walk on the Wilder Side-CD, Fanfare Magazine stated “this disc fills an important niche in American Music as well as flute literature.“
With 68 CD releases available on Cantilena Records, Ms. Zucker can be heard regularly on worldwide classical radio stations. She has performed many times in Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Alice Tully Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Mondavi Center, etc.
As a concerto soloist she has been featured with the American Symphony Orchestra, InterHarmony Orchestra of Italy, Erkel Chamber Orchestra of Budapest, The Orchestra of New York, Gold Country Orchestra, Merced Symphony, Sacramento Philharmonic, Arlington Symphony, and toured with Sumara Orchestra of Russia.
As an active chamber artist she has performed with the Marlboro Festival and Tour, Harvard Chamber Players, Music Fest of Arizona, Music in the Mountains, UC Davis Chamber Players, Wet Ink Festival, Chamber Music Alive!, InterHarmony Festival in Italy. Jazz Now 2005 describes her performance as “Laurel’s flute cutting the still air with a deep-felt emotion to the very last note.”
Claude Bolling in March 2004 on Zucker’s Bolling Jazz Suites CD writes “Dear Laurel Zucker, your recording is beautiful, musician partners are excellent and your flute playing superb!!!”
Of the Flute Music by French Composers CD, Sir James Galway recommends on his Facebook “This is a really good record and should be in the library of all serious students. The repertoire is very good and it is beautifully played by Miss Zucker. I have a copy and think it is outstanding…”
As an active performer and supporter of the flute community, Ms. Zucker has been a guest performer/teacher at the New York Flute Club, The Portland Flute Society, The Houston Flute Society, Los Angeles Flute Club, Dallas Flute Festival, North Carolina School of the Arts and the National Flute Association Convention.
In 2000 The Year of the Rome Aureole Jubilee (hosted by the City of Rome and the Pope) three of Ms. Zucker’s Cantilena Records CDs ( Serenades for flute and harp; Music of Guiliani for flute and guitar; Mozart Flute Quartets ) were played non-stop for six months throughout the largest Convention Center of Rome, Italy and were also featured in a documentary created at UCLA on the Santa Maria Maggiora Chapel of Rome.
In 2006 Ms. Zucker received THE BEST CLASSICAL SOLO INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM OF THE YEAR 2006 for her Cantilena Records release, Inflorescence, from The Just Plain Folks Awards.
As Professor of Flute at California State University in Sacramento since 1988, Ms. Zucker received the 1998 President’s Award for Creative and Scholarly Research, two 1998 and 2000 Creative Research Awards, and 1989 Professional Promise Award and several UEI travel grants. Most recently Ms. Zucker is the recipient of the 2013 Creative and Scholarly Research Award for The School of Arts at California State University.
1978 she won Artists International Competition and gave her Carnegie Recital Hall Debut. Her first performances in Carnegie Hall and Kennedy Center were at the age of 16 performing 1st flute in the Alexander Schneider’s Orchestra. Ms. Zucker graduated from Juilliard where she studied with Samuel Baron for 3 years; with Paula Robison for two years at New England Conservatory of Music; and privately with Marcel Moyse and Julius Baker. Ms. Zucker holds a Masters in Music Composition from New York University.
Her compositions are published by Jabiru Publications, Clear Note Publications, Lyra International, Subito Music and Bourne Music Company and are recorded on Cantilena Records. Since 2006 Ms. Zucker’s travels throughout Central and South American and the Middle East have inspired her to compose an extensive variety of chamber music both jazz and classical. Five CD releases representing a variety of her compositions: A Night in Quito for Flute and Jazz Piano Trio, Soundscapes of the Americas, Galápagos Wind Music and Journeys are available at fine stores and on-line. July 2012/2014 Ms. Zucker performed, gave masterclasses, performed and coached chamber music at InterHarmony Music Festival in Arcidosso, Italy. 2012-2016 Ms Zucker has held yearly Flute Workshops and concerts on various types of chamber ensembles. July 2012 Susan Jolles and Laurel Zucker performed at the 100th Annual American Harp Convention in New York City. 2010 Zucker gave a masterclass series at The French Woods Festival.
Steve Marsh, reviewer of Guitar Magazine, enthusiastically describes her compositions in the 2012 CD, “Soundscapes of the Americas” in this way: The extensive and interesting programme notes provided by the renowned flautist, Laurel Zucker, tell of her extensive travelling through North, Central and South America and the works on this disc reflect these explorations through a programme of descriptive, expressive and very enjoyable compositions. Shades of Villa-lobos dwell in parts of the opening track “Brazilian Sounds” scored for flute, guitar and cello, and this influence spills over into “Tears of the Amazon.” The natural world was the stimulation behind the enchanting “Celtic Snowflakes,” where the harp is highly suggestive of gentle snowflakes, and the tallest flying bird native to South and Central America, “The Jabiru” has a complete 3 movement suite for flute and cello dedicated to it. Capybaras, caimen and spider monkeys are musically depicted here. The longest work is the 5 movement South American Suite for flute and guitar. The inspiration here comes from forestry, an anaconda and the excitement felt by the composer travelling through such hostile territory- a “makes you jump moment” comes at the conclusion of movement 3 which features the flute technique called “jet whistle” – yet another nod in the direction of Villa-lobos who wrote a work for flute and cello titled after this technique.”
August 2014 in Los Angeles at Coburn. hall with KUSC Radio, Ms Zucker was featured in The 50th Anniversary Concert of Martin Luther King’s March on Washington. Music by prominent Afro-American composers Julio Racine and Coleridge -Taylor Perkinson. 2015 Ms Zucker toured China with her composition Shanghai for Flute Choir. 2016 Cantilena Records released 2 CD Volumes of Flute Music By Composers of African Descent. During 2017 Ms Zucker and Mark Delpriora will release their 6th recording on Cantilena Records. Dr Jacqueline Butler Hairston and Ms Zucker are featured on Cantilena Records’s release, Flute and Piano Music Composed by Women of African Descent.
During 2020 Ms Zucker released recordings of Joachim Andersen’s Etudes Opus 21, 30, 33, 41, 37. Andersen’s Etudes Opus 63, 60 and 15 will be released in 2021. In 2021 -Inflorescence VI Music for Solo Flute will be released. A new release for flute, saxophone and piano featuring Dr. Keith Bohm and Dr John Cozza will be available summer 2021.