"Laredo and Robinson demonstrated a wedding of technique and artistry in which music and performer are one
-St. Paul Pioneer Press
The storybook romance of the Bolivian-born violinist Jaime Laredo and American cellist Sharon Robinson has, over the past 35 years, been expressed in every facet of their lives. Joyous and sophisticated music making, both separately and together, has earned them many devoted fans the world over. Combining international careers and a multifaceted home life both in Vermont and Indiana, theirs is a bond of both close personal affection and strong dedication to music. As much-in-demand solo artists, as the Laredo-Robinson Duo, and as members of the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio with pianist Joseph Kalichstein for 35 years, Jaime Laredo and Sharon Robinson are among the busiest and most respected musicians in the world. In 2012, the husband-wife team joined esteemed instrumental and chamber music faculty of Cleveland Institute of Music. They have taught at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University since 2005.
During the 2011-2012 Season the Laredo-Robinson Duo premiered Richard Danielpour's Inventions on a Marriage, a work that has been written especially for them. Richard Danielpour has a long history of writing works for Laredo and Robinson in a variety of contexts - including duets, double concertos, piano trios and piano quartets. Adding to the rich repertoire is this 20-minute piece of contrasting movements that explores in "musical snapshots" the bond of marriage and long-term relationships. Premiering on May 21st, 2011 at the Virginia Arts Festival, the piece was presented across the US with the support of the Honest Brook Music Festival (NY); Lane Series (VT); Raleigh Chamber Music Guild (NC); the Schubert Club (MN); the String Theory at the Hunter Museum, presented with a gift from Sherry Keller Brown in memory of Dorothy Barckman Keller (TN); Linton Chamber Music Series of Cincinnati and Steven Monder (OH); and the New Orleans Friends of Music (LA), through the International Arts Foundation, Inc.
The Duo's latest recording, "Triple Doubles," was released by BRIDGE in the fall of 2011. The album includes three double concertos dedicated to the Duo: Daron Hagen's Masquerade, which draws inspiration from the stock of characters in Commedia Dell'arte, featuring the violin and cello as lead roles; a new, fully-orchestrated version of Richard Danielpour's A Child's Reliquary, originally written as a piano trio for the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio; and David Ludwig's Concerto for Violin, Cello and Orchestra, a double concerto taking inspiration from three kinds of love (Eros, Agape, and Philia), as told in three ancient stories. All three concertos are performed with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, with Troy Peters conducting the Hagen and Sarah Hicks leading the Ludwig and Danielpour.
The Laredo-Robinson Duo tours nationally to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Detroit, Dallas, Portland, Florida, North Carolina, Texas, the Tanglewood Music Festival in Massachusetts, as well as European tours, including appearances in Great Britain (Wigmore Hall, London), Lisbon, Amsterdam (the Concertgebouw), Spain, Wales, and Germany. In 2008 Sharon Robinson and Jaime Laredo established an ambitious project to premiere and record newly commissioned double concerti across the U.S., resulting in the world premiere of David Ludwig's Concerto for Violin, Cello, and Orchestra performed with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra under the baton of guest conductor Sarah Hicks. In a special celebration of Ellen Taaffe Zwilich's 70th birthday, Ms. Robinson and Mr. Laredo performed her Double Concerto, which was written especially for the Duo, with the Detroit Symphony under the baton of Hans Graf, where they also performed The Muse and the Poet by Saint-Saens.
Jaime Laredo and Sharon Robinson celebrated their wedding, Duo, and Trio's 30th anniversary during the 2006-07 season with major concerts in Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, the 92nd Street Y in New York, among other U.S. and European cities. The Duo commissioned composer Andy Stein specifically for this occasion and the new work Suite for Two was premiered. In addition, Naxos released the Double Concerto by Ned Rorem, also written for Laredo-Robinson, with the Iris Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Michael Stern. The Trio also commissioned Richard Danielpour for a new Piano Quartet, performed in 10 cities nationwide in 2006-'07 and 2007-'08. In October 2006, KOCH International Classics released the Trio's recording of Arensky & Tchaikovsky trios, as well as re-releases from their existing discography.
Other highlights include the New York premiere, at Carnegie Hall, of In the Arms of the Beloved, Richard Danielpour's concerto for violin and cello written for the Duo to celebrate 25 years of marriage. The April 2005 performance in New York as well as a subsequent performance in Philadelphia featured Maestro Michael Stern, who conducted the world premiere and the recently released recording on KOCH. The Duo also gave orchestral and chamber performances at the Grand Teton Music Festival in August 2004. In addition, Laredo maintained his busy conducting schedule, both with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra (he has been Music Director since 1999) and as a guest conductor with orchestras including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
Summer 2003 saw the release of their CD of In the Arms of the Beloved, paired with A Child's Reliquary, a piano trio written (also by Richard Danielpour) for the Trio. Mr. Laredo and Ms. Robinson presented the New York premiere of Ned Rorem's Double Concerto, another work written for them, with the New York Chamber Symphony at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall. Laredo and Robinson played the world premiere in 1998 with the Indianapolis Symphony conducted by Raymond Leppard; subsequent performances have been with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra with Hugh Wolff and with Michael Stern conducting the Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra in Germany, and the Helsinki Philharmonic.
In January 2001, Laredo and Robinson became co-artistic directors of the Hudson Valley Chamber Music Circle, the annual summer chamber music series at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.
Jaime Laredo, Sharon Robinson and pianist Joseph Kalichstein make up the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio, a group that has shared beloved master works and exciting new repertoire with loyal audiences around the world for thirty five consecutive seasons since its debut at the White House for President Carter's inauguration in January 1977. On KOCH International Classics, the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio has recorded the chamber works of Maurice Ravel, released in spring 2000, the complete string sonatas and trios of Shostakovich, and Legacies, a disc of new works written for the Trio by Arvo Pärt, Zwilich, Leon Kirchner and Stanley Silverman. In a fitting tribute to its 25th anniversary season, in December 2001 Musical America named the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio Ensemble of the Year 2002.
Jaime Laredo and Sharon Robinson received a Grammy nomination for the Two Brahms Sextets CD with their renowned colleagues Isaac Stern, Cho-Liang Lin, Michael Tree and Yo-Yo Ma. To celebrate Schubert's anniversary, that same ensemble (sans Michael Tree) also recorded Schubert's great Cello Quintet for Sony. In February 2000, KOCH released Conversations, the Duo's recording of works by David Ott, Handel, Gliere and Kodály. Other KOCH releases feature an all-Zwilich Concerto CD with Jaime Laredo, Sharon Robinson and Joseph Kalichstein as the soloists, including the double concerto written for Laredo and Robinson, and a triple concerto written for the Trio, as well as Volumes 1 and 2 of a two-volume, 4-CD all-Beethoven collection, called by BBC Music Magazine "urgently recommended" and awarded 5 stars.