Canadian violinist and violist BARRY SHIFFMAN has had a rich and varied career as a performer, recording artist, and teacher. He made his debut with the Toronto Symphony and Andrew Davis at the age of fifteen and has appeared with orchestras and in recital across Canada, in the United States and Europe.
Since his studies at the University of Toronto and the Utrecht Conservatory in the Netherlands, Shiffman has become best-known for his chamber music career. In 1989, he co-founded the St. Lawrence String Quartet. The quartet has become one of the most sought-after ensembles of its generation, enjoying a busy concert calendar with over 100 performances worldwide. Highlights of the Quartet's 2005/06 season include their popular series Sundays with the St. Lawrence for Stanford Lively Arts, a performance of music by Golijov and Schubert at New York's Lincoln Center, performances in Boston and Palm Beach with pianist Menahem Pressler, and appearances in Detroit, Cleveland, Atlanta, Baltimore, Houston, New Orleans, Salt Lake City, La Jolla, Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa, Urbana, IL, and Dartmouth College. The quartet recently visited Europe for concerts in Holland, Germany, and Switzerland, and will return in July for festivals in France and Germany with pianist Menahem Pressler. The season concludes with a 20-concert tour of Australia and New Zealand.
In addition to performing and recording, Shiffman is a sought-after violin and viola teacher and chamber music coach. As part of his role in the St. Lawrence String Quartet, Shiffman has been artist-in-residence at Stanford University since 1998 and has served as visiting artist at the University of Toronto since 1995. For the 2005-2006 academic year the Quartet has also been appointed as distinguished guest faculty at Arizona State University in Phoenix.
Shiffman was recently appointed director of music programs at the Banff Centre in Canada, and will take up residence in Banff in September 2006.