Prior to relocating to Boston in 2006, cellist/composer Steven Laven kept a busy musical pace in Houston, performing in the Houston Ballet and Grand Opera Orchestras, with various local choral groups, churches and chamber music groups, and substituting with the Houston Symphony. He has been on the faculties of Houston Baptist University and East Carolina University, the American Festival of the Arts, and has a large private studio of young cellists. Mr. Laven received his Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music and earned his Master’s degree from the Manhattan School of Music. Mr. Laven also served as principal cellist of the Omaha Symphony for nine years, appearing as soloist in seven consecutive seasons. A highlight of his time in Houston was the chance to perform two Vivaldi cello concerti with the Moscow State Symphony at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, while touring with the Houston Ballet. During the past seventeen summers, he has enjoyed performing orchestral and chamber music at the Grand Teton Music Festival.
Mr. Laven’s music has been performed on new music concert series in Houston and Galveston, and his piece A Barnraising was played on the Kimmel Center Presents Chamber Music series by the Philadelphia Orchestra marimba quartet in May 2006. The original string quartet version has been played by quartets from the Houston and Colorado Symphony and premiered by his quartet, The Wind River 4, at the Grand Teton Music Festival. The string trio version was also premiered there in July 2007. Music for young string orchestra includes Westward Odyssey, which won honorable mention in the 2006 Merle J. Isaac ASTA Composition Competition.
Currently Mr. Laven lives in the Boston area and plays with such groups as the Boston Pops, the Rhode Island Philharmonic, and the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, where he is the principal cellist. He is working on a CD of his music with his wife, Cynthia Meyers, who is a piccolo player with the Boston Symphony.