B.M., M.M., University of Redlands
D.M.A., University of Southern California (December 2020)
Solo & Collaborative Piano
Early Music & Performance Practice
Social Justice through Community Music
A native of Southern California, pianist Lara Urrutia is no stranger to the concert stage. Since the age of eleven she has appeared over a dozen times as soloist with symphony orchestras in the Los Angeles and surrounding areas, and has given several hundred other performances as recitalist, competition winner and collaborator. She has performed at major venues such as the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion at the Los Angeles Music Center, the Kodak Theater, the Shrine Auditorium, the Crystal Cathedral, and has been featured on Fox Channel 11’s Good Day LA.
Ms. Urrutia has worked with composers Gunther Schuller, Libby Larsen, Joan Tower, and Eric Ewazen whose work she premiered in 2017 along with trombonist Jeremy Wilson. In 2007 as part of the University of Redlands Centennial celebration, Ms. Urrutia was invited to perform Grieg’s Concerto in A minor at the Redlands Bowl with Frank Fetta conducting. Her most recent solo performance of Janacek’s Capriccio for Piano Left-Hand and Wind Ensemble took place in Los Angeles with the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music Brass Ensemble. In addition to a busy musical life in Southern California, Ms. Urrutia has concertized extensively in the country of Chile, and has also performed in Austria, Mexico, and in Hawaii, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, and Tennessee.
Her recording of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, released by Gold Label in the spring of 2000, as well her performance of Copland’s Appalachian Spring with the University of Redlands Faculty Chamber ensemble has been broadcasted live on air. Ms. Urrutia can also be heard on Hymns to Forgotten Moons: Music of Arnold Schoenberg and Anthony Suter, released in 2010 by Centaur Entertainment label.
Prior to pursuing her doctorate at the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California, Ms. Urrutia served on faculty at the University of Redlands School of Music from 2007 to 2017 where she headed the collaborative piano department and also taught piano and accompanying. She received an Outstanding Teaching award from the University of Redlands in 2013.
Maintaining an active performing career in the Southland both as a soloist and collaborative artist, Ms. Urrutia has appeared more than a half dozen times with the principle tubist of the Chicago Symphony, Gene Pokorny, and has collaborated with other current and former principle-chair members of major orchestras such as the Chicago, Detroit, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Antonio, Winnipeg, and Beijing Symphonies, the New York City Ballet, the London, Vienna, and Berlin Philharmonics, and the English National Opera.
Ms. Urrutia has been highly regarded for her dedicated work on behalf of children. Beginning at age twelve, Ms. Urrutia performed 29 concerts to raise money for a young friend needing a heart-lung transplant. Her second project raised funds for another child needing multiple brain surgeries. Through her many concerts she has also assisted in fund-raising for Child Help USA, the Home Mechanical Ventilation Program, and the City of Hope. Her work came to the attention of the late Congressman Sonny Bono who, along with members of the film industry such as Tom Selleck, Cheryl Ladd, John Stamos, Efrem Zimbalist, Jr., and others involved in philanthropic endeavors, publicly celebrated her volunteer work. Ms. Urrutia has been honored by KNX News Radio as an outstanding citizen, and by Child Help USA as Sweetheart of the Year for her volunteer work. She has also received a special commendation from President Clinton for her note-worthy contributions to society. Ms. Urrutia’s doctoral research on social justice in music teaching and learning is based on community music for homeless youth and for those in correctional settings.
Ms. Urrutia received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Piano Performance at the University of Redlands where she studied with Louanne Long and Cordelia Hoffer at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria. At the University of Southern California, she studied Keyboard Collaborative Arts with Kevin Fitz-Gerald. Ms. Urrutia is also an accomplished violinist, accordionist, and an award-winning poet. She is a member of Local 47 American Federation of Musicians, and Pi Kappa Lambda, the national honorary mus