Leslie Amper began her career with a critically acclaimed New York debut in Carnegie Recital Hall. She went on to delight audiences in Chicago, New York, Pittsburgh, and San Francisco as well as at Monadnock Music’s Virtuoso Piano Series. A member of the Alcyon Chamber Ensemble and the Jubilee Trio, she has also been a regular participant in Boston’s Emmanuel Music celebrations the music of Schumann, Schubert, Brahms, and Debussy.
Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Amper took full advantage of a program then current in that city’s schools, through which serious high school musicians were allowed to forego classes for a few hours each day in order have adequate practice time and to take advantage of performance opportunities. She spent her high school summers at the Interlochen Music Camp and the Aspen Music Festival. After two years at Oberlin College, she continued her studies at the New England Conservatory of Music with Rudolph Kolisch, Gunther Schuller, and Russell Sherman. While at the conservatory, she won the first annual Jordan Hall Honors Competition and played Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 at the graduation ceremonies.
An acknowledged scholar and practitioner of contemporary music, Amper has recorded Andrew Imbrie’s Short Story for Neuma Records which was chosen for the international radio broadcast, Art of the States. Equally adept at accompanying silent film, she has compiled piano accompaniments at the Harvard Film Archives for the short films of Georges Méliès and King Vidor’s The Crowd, among others. As a recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts solo recitalist grant, she presented Messiaen’s monumental Vingt Regards sur l’enfant-Jésus in Boston, New York, Pittsburgh, and Washington, DC. Other performances include playing Scriabin as an onstage pianist for Peter Sellars’ production of Chekov’s A Seagull at the American National Theater and a lecture/recital for the Smithsonian American Art Museum Exhibition 1934: A New Deal for Artists which toured the United States.
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Currently teaching at the Longy School of Music of Bard College, the New England Conservatory Preparatory Department, and Wheaton College, Leslie Amper has lectured at Boston University, Currier House of Harvard University, and the University of Pittsburgh as well as at the New Hampshire Music Festival, where she is a regular performer.