LA has new principal viola

LA has new principal viola


norman lebrecht

May 20, 2022

The international soloist Yura Lee has taken a job as principal viola with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra.

She is a past winner of the 2013 ARD Music Competition in Munich, and she also plays violin (as you can see).




  • Frank says:

    Misleading headline. LACO is a freelance group that plays a fraction of the weeks as LA Phil. Yura Lee is mainly known as a violinist to the extent that she was recently considered for a major US concertmaster position.

    • Phillip says:

      I don’t think your description of LACO is quite correct. They have their own roster of musicians and is hardly a freelance group, while of course their players do freelance (Pacific Symphony, studio gigs, teaching, university positions, chamber ensembles, etc…) I don’t think many of them happen to sub in the LA Phil at all.

      • Frank says:

        I didn’t say anything their players had anything to do with LA Phil. LACO doesn’t work enough for their players to subsist on just that, therefore all members must have multiple sources of income (aka freelancing). I was just pointing out that Norman’s headline was misleading with the intent of making readers think he’s referring to the LA Phil when in fact it refers to a much smaller (but not insignificant) part-time ensemble.

  • NYMike says:

    Yura’s a frequent performer @ Chamber Music Society/Lincoln Center.

  • Doctor J says:

    From ARD to this? She has been trying really hard to get a leader job at several European orchestras and I suppose it didn’t go so well for her. This is what happens when you get pushed into music at a young age with nothing to say by the time you’re pushing 40.

    • just saying says:

      She has a career that most classical string players would do anything to have. Plus, she has a great teaching position at USC. Not bad for “pushing 40″…

      • So am I... says:

        She is also someone who made fun on Facebook about the Germanwings plane crash back in 2015. Since that post I lost any kind of respect for her… And before you say anything else… yes – I do have a screenshot of it!

        • Another view says:

          That certainly sounds like her. She generally spends her time at the “you invite me so I invite you” chamber music festivals where she tends to make crass remarks and sit with her colleagues from CMS as though she were in a high school canteen. As Doctor J observed above, she really has nothing to say about music.