Monica Jakuc Leverett
Monica Jakuc (pronounced Ya-kutch) Leverett is the Elsie Irwin Sweeney Professor Emerita of Music at Smith College, where she taught since 1969. Her career has included concerts on three continents, and she is a frequent solo and chamber music performer in Western Massachusetts, playing on both early and modern pianos. She has been a toy piano artist since 2015, and has commissioned many works by living composers.
New York audiences first heard Ms. Jakuc Leverett at Alice Tully Hall in 1980 in "A Program of Twentieth-Century Music for Two Pianos" with colleague Kenneth Fearn. Her performance of Bach's "Goldberg" Variations at Merkin Hall was hailed by The New York Times as "an auspicious debut...one will observe Ms. Jakuc's career with more than usual interest." Her 1988 London debut included the premier of a piece written for her by Ronald Perera. She has toured Japan and Alaska and appears often on both U.S. coasts. Ms. Jakuc also delivers lecture-recitals on women composers and has been a featured artist at International Association of Women in Music concerts in London and Washington, D.C.
|Interview with Laurie Saunders|
|Courtesy NEPR Public Radio.|
Inspired by Malcolm Bilson, Ms. Jakuc Leverett has performed on early pianos since 1986. She has been a frequent guest artist at the E.M. Frederick Collection in Ashburnham, Massachusetts, and was an organizer and performer at the international HaydnFest 1990, co-sponsored by Smith and the Westfield Center for Early Keyboard Studies. She has given a fortepiano recital in the Klementinum, Prague, Czech Repulbic. A former board member of Arcadia Players, she frequently performed with them on her two fortepianos by Paul McNulty: a 5 ½ octave Walter design, and a 6 ½ octave copy of Graf’s Op. 318 (c. 1819). Her “insistent and amazing artistry” was hailed by the Worcester Telegram and Gazette in a Tuckerman Hall performance of Beethoven’s Fourth Piano Concerto with Arcadia Players. She was a performer/participant in the Westfield Center’s Forte/Piano Festival at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY in
Ms. Jakuc Leverett's discography includes fortepiano sonatas by Marianne von Martinez, Marianna von Auenbrugger, and Joseph Haydn on Titanic Records, and Francesca LeBrun's complete Opus 1 Sonatas for fortepiano and violin, with Dana Maiben, on Dorian Discovery. Her newest CD, Fantasies for Fortepiano, features works by Mozart, C.P.E. Bach, Haydn, and Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata. It is available on cdbaby.com.
Born in Newark, New Jersey, Ms. Jakuc Leverett received B.S. and M.S. degrees from Juilliard, where she studied with James Friskin and Beveridge Webster. She has also worked with Leon Fleisher, Russell Sherman, and Konrad Wolff, a pupil of Artur Schnabel.
In 2006, she married Bob Leverett, and together they explore forests and give presentations on nature and music. They have recently established the Monica and Bob Leverett Forever-Wild Conservation Fund at Kestrel Land Trust. Please visit www.monicajakucleverett.com.